Sky-high plane ticket prices mean more people are hitting the roads this holiday season. If you’re one of them, here are our top 10 tips to help you stay safe and sane while visiting loved ones.
1. Avoid Peak Travel Days & Times
Even in the midst of a pandemic, the holidays are the busiest time of the year for travel. According to the AAA, the worst times to hit the road are the two days before Christmas (December 23-24) and the day after (December 26).
To avoid traffic jams, work your travel around these days and try to leave early in the morning or late at night. After all, the best time to drive is when everyone else is sleeping!
2. Build A Plan B
If you anticipate running into heavy traffic, consider a more scenic, alternate route you can take instead. You never know what fun you might have along the way, even if it takes a little longer.
3. Don’t Bite Off More Than You Can Chew
If you have family members who live hundreds of miles away, you know how monotonous the drive can be. Why not spice things up with a few new stops along the way? Museums, different rest stops, and famous photo-ops can be a great way to break your drive into smaller chunks and make memories you wouldn’t have otherwise.
You can even check out mom-and-pop shops and restaurants along your route ahead of time as a way to break up the drive while supporting small businesses during these times.
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4. Stay Connected
From Spotify to GasBuddy, there are thousands of road trip apps out there to help you on your travels.
Don’t forget to download the free FIXD app with the FIXD Sensor so you can monitor your car’s health in real time with the live data feed feature and easily diagnose any issues that pop up along the way.
Plus, with FIXD Premium, you can call our trusted mechanics for help in the event of a breakdown! From scheduling service when you’re miles from home to troubleshooting issues over the phone, we’ve got your back for a safe and stress-free holiday road trip.
5. Don’t Get Hangry
While you’re stocking up on apps for your phone, stock up on snacks, too. It’ll save you from spending a small fortune on over-priced gas station goods and keep you focused on the road. We love protein bars, homemade trail mix, dried fruit, boiled eggs and crackers.
P.S. Not drinking enough water can make you feel tired and irritable (not ideal for being stuck in the car for hours). So be sure to stock up on H20 as well!
6. Pack Your Winter Road Trip Kit
An important part of winterizing your vehicle is packing an emergency kit in case you break down in inclement weather. This should include everything from jumper cables and antifreeze to a first aid kit and extra winter clothing and blankets.
For a full list of what to pack, check out our Winter Emergency Car Kit.
7. Keep The Kids Entertained
Getting the kids a Nintendo Switch for Christmas? Snagged some great deals on card games during Black Friday? Plan a special night to give them out ahead of your trip so the kids will be happily distracted during your road trip (while you get some peace and quiet to read or listen to your music). Just don’t forget to pack their headphones!
Check out our 7 Ways To Keep Kids Entertained On A Road Trip for more creative ideas for kids of all ages!
8. Practice Good Hygiene
Many viruses, from the common cold and flu to COVID, thrive in cold temperatures. To avoid getting sick while traveling, be sure to wash your hands at every pit stop and keep a bottle of hand sanitizer in the car.
9. Minimize Trips
To maximize safety, it’s best to take as few trips as possible during this time. Try to coordinate with loved ones to meet in one place and remain there for the duration of your stay. This will help reduce your risk of getting sick or getting into an accident.
10. Take A Deep Breath And Be Kind
Last but certainly not least, remember to breathe and be kind. A lot of people and service workers you’ll cross paths with are wishing they could be home for the holidays. If you run into a Grinch on your road trip, don’t stress. Your smile may be the only one they see today.
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We hope you found these tips for your holiday road trip helpful. And from all of us at FIXD HQ in Atlanta, Georgia, we wish you and your family a safe and happy holiday.
To make sure your trip goes smoothly, don’t forget to take FIXD on the road. No more unclear check engine lights or confusing technical definitions. Just the information you need to know about your car’s health and maintenance in simple, easy-to-understand terms, right on your smartphone. Click for special offers going on now!
Wife, mom, Content Manager & Senior Copywriter at FIXD. From the garage to the gym, I love helping people learn and grow. Dream car: ‘69 Acapulco Blue Mustang.