If the scenes of chaos on the roads outside Dover recently didn’t dampen your spirits, the summer months are the perfect time to hit the road and make the most of the freedom and excitement that a road trip can bring.
Whether you’re hopping over to the continent with the kids, or taking an adventurous ride down Route 66, follow our essential summer road trip checklist to make sure you’ve left nothing to chance.
- Planning your own road trip offers you the kind of freedom that a package holiday simply can’t provide but, to avoid any pitfalls, you need to be prepared. Plan your route in advance, save routes on your satnav and phone, and buy a map for when batteries fail you. Make sure you also tell friends or relatives where you are going and for how long, and give them a copy of your itinerary and emergency contact numbers.
- Make sure you have all your documents with you, completed and up to date. This includes things like your driving licence and vehicle registration, your passport (with the emergency contact page completed), car and travel insurance documents, and your visa for whatever country you’re in (if you need one)
- Check your car is up to the task. Unless you’re hiring a car abroad, you need to make sure that your motor is up to the job of hauling you, your family, and your luggage to wherever you’re headed. Check things like your battery, oil and petrol levels, tyre condition and water levels, and also make sure you’ve got a supply of spares and tools, including fuses and light bulbs, a spare tyre, a jack, and jump leads.
- Before you set off, it’s important to check the driving laws and requirements of the countries you’ll be visiting – something you can do on the Foreign Office website. Some changes will be relatively minor, such as some EU countries allowing higher speed limits, but others can have drastically different drink-driving laws, and some require you by law to carry certain items in your car – so better be safe than sorry.
- If you are travelling in the EU, make sure you have a free European Health Insurance Card for free or reduced emergency care, and make a note of the emergency services number for whatever country you’re in (it’s 112 across the EU). Depending on which country you’re visiting you may need to take special medication with you or receive vaccinations before you travel, so check with your GP if you’re heading anywhere particularly exotic.
- If you’re anything like us, holidays can quickly spiral over budget, so it’s important to keep a little emergency cash (or money in traveller’s cheques) aside in case you get stuck abroad. Check with your bank before you go abroad about the rules on using your cards abroad, as some will allow you free withdrawals, reducing the need to carry cash.
- Get travel insurance that covers you for all the countries that you’re driving in, and for the entire duration of your holiday. Adrian Flux offers flexible travel insurance quotes that are tailored to your exact needs and cover single-trip and multi-trip options that can cover you and your whole family for the entire year.
- Finally, don’t forget to drive on the correct side of the road!
To find out more about travel insurance from Adrian Flux, including cover for lost luggage, trip cancellations, medical expenses and lost passports, visit www.adrianflux.co.uk/travel or call our team today on 0800 369 8590