Tips to get ready for Long Drive
Long Driving rather than flying or taking a train can often be more convenient .
1. Make lists a week or two before the trip
List what will go in your suitcase and make another list of things you need to do before the trip. This can include getting a car tune up, or washing/waxing/cleaning the car. This will help you be less stressed since everything is written on paper, and you will be less likely to forget something
2. Pack your suitcase a few days before the trip
This gives you time to think about adding things in or taking things out and will generally make you less stressed before the trip.
3. Pack an additional carry on bag
This could include some books, electronic entertainment (handheld games, mp3 players, laptops, DVDs if the car has a DVD player, etc.), non-perishable snacks (such as granola bars and cookies), and drinks if you have a cooler. Remember that if you bring carbonated drinks, they may go flat.
4. Choose the right car
Ensure your car is serviceable before you depart. This means that your car should be within its servicing period, and the oil and filter should have been changed recently. All of the water reservoirs should also be full. Check your tyres to ensure they will remain within their wear limits during your trip and purchase and install new tyres if required.If you will be driving a long distance also consider getting your wheels aligned before you go as this will save on tyre wear later on. If you drive on any unsealed roads while you travel you should also plan to get the wheels aligned again after you return (lesson learnt from our road trip last year we did not do this step and had to replace all four relatively new tyres within 12 months).If you will be hiring a vehicle have a close look at the quality of vehicle that they offer and support they will provide.
5. Route Plan
The biggest killers on the road are fatigue and alcohol. Before you depart you should quickly research a rough plan of your route including the driving times and distances. If you will be stopping to sightsee en route you should plan a maximum of four hours of driving in a day. If you have a long distance driving day you should plan to have a non-driving day afterwards to recover. Make sure you do not drink alcohol and drive.Allow an extra day or two so you can be flexible if you decide to stay longer in a place or decide to break a longer drive into two shorter driving days, or if something unexpected occurs. Also do some initial research into sightseeing options along the way so you know where you are interested to visit and can build these into your plan.Online tools such as Google Maps enable you to quickly put together a route plan.
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