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Long Distance Driving Tips to Help You Enjoy a Summer Road Trip

Posted on 13th June 2023
Long Distance Driving Tips to Help You Enjoy a Summer Road Trip

With more and more of us choosing a staycation over a trip abroad, many UK holidaymakers are packing up and heading out on a road trip this summer. For some, it’s a tour across the country stopping off at various sites as you navigate the British countryside, for others, it’s one long journey to get you to a destination where rest and relaxation are all that’s on the cards.

No matter where you are planning to drive, there is every chance that the journey involves at least a couple of hours on the road. With that in mind, it is worth taking note of some key driving tips so that you can enjoy the holiday and keep yourself focused when behind the wheel.

Plan ahead

You may already have an idea of where you are going but do you know how to get there? Relying on a Sat-Nav can be handy but should there be delays on the day of travel, your plans may need a quick change.

Plot a route via sat-nav but also look at backup routes. Factor in stop-off points along the way for refuelling or for your own personal pitstop.

If meeting people at your destination it may also be wise to keep in touch with them when you pull over or use a petrol station. Then they will have a good idea about your ETA and can also advise you of anything that may have changed regarding access to your destination for example.

Make sure your car is ready for the journey

There is nothing worse than having your car breakdown whilst on a long journey, the wait for a repair service to attend, the costs, and the disruption, it all makes for a less-than-perfect start to your domestic getaway. So, preparing in advance is the best possible way to avoid that happening!

Check the key safety components of your vehicle such as:

  • Lights
  • Steering
  • Tyre tread and pressure
  • Wipers
  • Seatbelts
  • Fluid levels

It would also be a good time to give your car a clean both inside and out. A cluttered car could so easily ruin the holiday vibe.

Check you have a road safety kit

The journey is likely to take a few hours and until you arrive at your destination there is every chance of an accident. As drastic as it sounds, with almost 346 road accidents each day in the UK, it makes sense to be prepared to keep yourself safe.

Ensure you have a first aid kit, a flashlight, roadside safety gear such as a hi-vis jacket, reflective triangles etc and a spare tyre.

Make sure you are rested before the journey

Driving long distances may be relaxing and even enjoyable but the level of concentration required, and the repetitive sights can often lead to tiredness.  Get sufficient rest the night before and adjust your sleep time according to your journey. If you are leaving in the early morning, consider going to bed earlier than normal. If you need to leave late at night, have a daytime nap to help boost your energy.

You should also refrain from consuming any alcohol the day before you drive.

Factor in rest stops every 100 miles

Whilst getting to your destination quickly may be a goal of yours, you need to remember the safety of yourself and your passengers. By resting every 100 miles you allow yourself to reset a little before getting back on the road. Not only this but you also gain perfect opportunities for snack breaks, toilet stops or photo ops if in a scenic area.

Consider sharing the drive

If there is more than one person qualified and insured to drive it is worth considering a share of the driving. This way you can avoid tiredness and spend an equal amount of time enjoying the scenery.

Allow time to complete the journey

You may have already planned the route and got a good time showing on your Sat-Nav but this doesn’t factor in rest breaks or anything else that could hinder your journey time. If you need to be at the destination by a certain time but have lost time due to your stops, you are more likely to drive erratically in order to reach your destination at your scheduled time. This can lead to accidents. Look at the ETA your Sat-Nav provides you with and perhaps add on an extra half-hour/45mins so you can drive on stress-free.

Pack some entertainment

Long journeys can be tedious for the passengers in your car, especially the children. There are plenty of games to keep kids entertained on long journeys and for the adults, a podcast or playlist can soon see the time pass by. Maybe hop in the back with the kids to join in the games or invest in a Kindle to immerse yourself in a good book!

Dress suitably for long drives

Sitting in the same seat for a long period can get a little uncomfortable. Especially if it’s a summer drive. Dress lightly with the option to warm up rather than the option of dressing heavy and then having to change. Also, be aware of the sun. Whilst you are in the car you may not feel the full impact of the sun but you can still get sunburnt!

Avoid excessive use of cruise control

A long journey may see you tempted to set the cruise control going but as much as it sounds beneficial to let the car take the strain, you will likely run the risk of your concentration dipping too much. This could lead to accidents. If you do have a cruise control system, use it sporadically and for short periods.

Keep the air flowing

Having fresh air circulate will help keep you focused and stop you from potentially falling asleep. Switching between opening windows and using air con as keeping the windows open for the duration will hit your fuel economy.

And finally…..

Keep alert to the road rules. A long drive may see you start to switch off a little but always remain attentive to road signs and markings as well as any notices informing you of anything relevant to transport links around the area you are heading into.

A summer trip by road can be so much fun for everyone involved. Even the driver! Sometimes though the current vehicle may not be up to the long slog. If so, speak to us at Euphoria Finance. We have access to over 50,000 vehicles and can help anyone get the car they wish! Whether that be for cheap new cars on finance or a used car finance deal. Better still, in our role as a direct lender, we can even say yes to those in search of bad credit car loans. Why not contact us today and get a free quote for quick car finance?

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