Four Safe Driving Tips for Holiday Road Trips

Four Safe Driving Tips for Holiday Road Trips

Tens of millions of Americans travel to visit family members during the holiday season, and many of these trips involve long highway drives. This increased traffic combined with possible inclement winter weather can make the holidays a dangerous time to be on the road. Drivers should keep these four tips in mind to stay safe when heading home or anywhere else for the holidays.

Schedule a Tune-Up

A line of cars driving down a snowy road

Before hitting the road, drivers should make sure their cars are in optimal working order. Check for proper tire inflation, working lights and windshield wipers, and correct fluid levels. For best results, schedule professional maintenance by a qualified mechanic. Those who need new tires, an oil change, or other larger maintenance tasks should take care of it before taking a holiday road trip.

Make a Plan, Check It Twice

Much like Santa, drivers must pay attention to an important list this holiday season. Map out the route to the holiday destination in advance and check the weather conditions along the way. Be prepared to leave earlier than planned to avoid inclement weather in the desired path, or delay the trip by a day or two if needed.

Pack for Emergencies

Even the best-laid plans can go awry. Drivers should carry an extra bottle of windshield wiper fluid, kitty litter or traction mats, extra clothing and blankets, bottled water and packable snacks like granola bars, and snow boots in case they become trapped or stranded by an unexpected storm.

Stave Off Fatigue

Being tired behind the wheel is one of the biggest dangers, especially on a long trip. For best results, switch drivers every few hours. Make sure to get a good night’s sleep before leaving for the journey. Those who are driving alone should take frequent breaks for coffee or just to stretch and walk around. If possible, break up a long trip into two days and stay in a hotel.

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