Road trips are the stuff great memories are made of. Depending on your appetite for adventure, you can either plan a short getaway or a road trip that lasts for days. However, all long-distance trips come with their own safety hazards, so it's natural for parents to be concerned about travelling for a long time with their kids. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to reduce some of the risks, as well as your stress levels.
Here are four safety tips to help get you to your destination safely.
Check Your Car
This one's a no-brainer. If you're going to be on the road for a while, checking your car should be the first order of business. Ideally, you should be getting your car serviced before a road trip.
But since that might not be possible for many people, this is the least you should do:
• Fill up on fuel
• Check oil and water
• Check tyre pressure
• Pack a spare wheel
• Clean your windows
Plan Your Route
This is probably one of the most effective ways to avoid traffic and all the stress that comes with it. Apps such as Google Maps lets you plan a road trip with multiple stops and estimate the total driving time. Just make sure you add 25% extra to the estimated time to account for traffic and frequent breaks.
The ideal route plan should also include pit stops. Consider a place that not only allows you to stretch your legs, but also gives you the opportunity to have an intimate meal with your family. Engen Wimpy is probably your best bet.
Apart from serving appetising meals, there's also plenty to keep the kids busy. You can order them a kids combo meal, which comes with a Number Robot. Make enough pit stops to collect all 10, and they'll be able to build a Mega Bot.
Don’t Ignore Fatigue
After hours on the road, the idea of taking another pit stop might not sit well with you. Maybe you just want to soldier on until you reach your destination. Bad idea. Fatigue severely impairs your ability to drive, impacting everything from reaction time to your ability to process information. If you feel a wave of fatigue washing over you while you’re behind the wheel, you’re overdue for another long break.
Carry a Spare Tyre and Know How to Change It
Unless your insurance provides roadside assistance and you don't mind waiting for help to arrive, you'll want to learn how to change a flat tyre yourself. Google a few tutorials and practise changing a tyre in your driveway so you're ready if you have to do it on the road.
There is no better, more affordable way to see the country than to explore it by car. But the destination isn't as important as the people you travel with. It doesn't matter where you're going. It's who you have beside you that counts.