You can be a traditionalist who can’t imagine being away from home during Thanksgiving or Christmas. Young families these days are more adventurous grabbing each opportunity to see more places as they can when given the chance. When you have but a long weekend to travel or your budget is tight, going on a 3-hour road trip for a scenic drive or to a local attraction can be smart option.
There are about 39 million Americans who usually opt to do this kind of travel around Thanksgiving, according to American Automobile Association, not to mention millions more around the world who likes to travel during holidays. One thing that these road trippers must be ready for are winter storms, if they live in those wintry places, and other road hazards that can put their life in peril along with their families and friends.
So, what preparations can you do before heading out on the road to stay safe? Here are “6 tips for surviving your holiday road trip ” that Jeff Rossen and Avni Patel suggest you follow for a safe road trip this holiday season:
· De-icing spray/washer fluid: … spray it onto your windows and it’ll melt the ice. Better yet, fill up your car with washer fluid …That way you can spray it onto your windshield as you drive … And it’s always good to bring an extra bottle with you.
· All-in-one car emergency kit: … buy an all-in-one kit. They come with jumper cables, flashlight, batteries, even a rain poncho and a first aid kit.
· Portable backup battery: … A portable backup battery can be plugged into the wall and charged up before you leave; it’ll hold the juice and charge your device on the road without you needing to plug anything in…
· Low-salt snacks: To survive the trip with kids… don’t give them salty … Salt makes you thirsty: You drink more water, and that means more bathroom stops — not fun in wintry weather. Good options for low-salt snacks include granola bars, fruit snacks, string cheese and fruit.
Another holiday road trip smart tip is to carry with you emergency supplies, just in case you get stuck on the roadside for some time. These would include blankets, flares, hand-cranked radio, smartphone charger, and what else but some energy-replenishing bites and drinks.
Traction for the wheels can take your vehicle when it gets stuck in snow or ice. A good “emergency item” to help you get out there would be a “kitty litter.” Bring a big bag in the trunk; you’ll never know when you’re going to use it when the snow comes down hard.
For additional tips, check out “ Holiday Road Trip Survival Tips” posted in AAA Exchange – Automobiles and Travel Section.
· Ensure your vehicle is properly maintained. If maintenance is not up to date, have your car and tires inspected before you take a long drive.
· Map your route in advance and be prepared for busy roads during the most popular times of the year. If possible, consider leaving earlier or later to avoid heavy traffic.
· Keep anything of value in the trunk or covered storage area.
It will be safer if you can brief your kids not to talk to strangers when you make those stops for personal necessities. Make sure they are always accompanied when they go the restrooms. Giving them a whistle to blow in case of emergencies can alarm you and other bystanders in case of an emergency.
It is good to arrange for roadside assistance in case an incident arises while on the road. Aside from AAA, there are other companies that offer smartphone apps that can help motorists requesting for assistance in case of an emergency.
Are you contemplating on going on a road trip this holiday to see your folks or to head to a vacation spot to celebrate holidays? All it takes is planning and preparation to safely navigate the road and to enjoy a safe holiday. While 100 percent safety can never be guaranteed, these basic tips and preparations can help you get to your destination in one piece.