Road Trips 101 ~ The Southern Scoop’s Travel Tip of the Month
Start off your next vacation on the right foot with the Southern Scoop’s Travel Tip of the Month: Road Trips 101. Nothing puts the “brakes” on a fun-filled trip to the beach with your family worse than a vehicle issue. A few simple steps before you hit the road can be the difference between an early check-in and cutting a day off your vacation. You leave work, everyone’s bags are already packed, and the family is waiting for you to return home from work to get on the road. Take a deep breath, and a few simple precautionary steps, to ensure nothing gets in the way of your dream beach vacation!
Check your car for the following items:
- A first aid kit. You can purchase a vehicle-ready kit from most hardware stores or your closest Wal-Mart or Target. The old saying “It’s better to not need it and have it than need it and not have it” applies more to having first aid supplies than almost anything else. Whether it’s rendering aid during an accident or cleaning up one of the children falling out of the vehicle rushing to the McDonald’s play place, first aid kits are critical to have in any vehicle.
- Jumper cables (at a minimum) or a battery charger (preferred). All it takes is junior to leave a light or media player on while the family stops for a meal to drain the entirety of some car batteries. Stores such as Home Depot even carry battery chargers which eliminate the need for cables, and can connect directly to your car battery and charge it.
- Blankets, jackets, or heavy clothes. If you’re traveling in the winter months or you’re coming from further up north, it’s always a good idea to have items in your vehicle to protect you and your family from the elements should an accident disable your vehicle or your vehicle just stops working.
Check to ensure your spare tire is accessible and serviceable! A vehicle jack specific to the weight of your vehicle comes included during purchase, ensure you know where it is! The jack is usually either under, on, or near the location of the spare tire.
Conduct an inspection of your vehicle:
- Ensure your vehicle will not be due for an oil change for the duration of your trip. If your round trip and in and around mileage exceeds your recommended oil change date, head to the shop! If your vehicle is not due for an oil change, simply check your oil level.
- Check the tread on your tires. Conduct a simple “penny test” to ensure your tire’s treads aren’t worn down. We can’t stress this enough! Safety is the top priority, and the weather can be unpredictable. Always make sure your vehicle’s tires are in good condition when going on a long road trip.
- Windshield wipers and washer fluid. If your vehicle receives routine maintenance it’s unlikely either of these will be an issue. Always keep spare fluid in the trunk of your vehicle.
Before you hit the road…
It’s always a good idea to pack one morning’s worth of food, drink, and the kids’ favorite cereal in the event you need to stop and the stores aren’t open. After you’ve done a thorough inspection of your vehicle, checked your tires, and ensure you have everything you hopefully won’t need, you’re ready to hit the road! Remember, safety is key! We can’t wait to see you at the beach!
We hope you like the travel tip we’ve brought you this month. Since we’ve got you covered from Panama City, Florida to Gulf Shores and Fort Morgan Alabama, ensure you browse on over to our events page to find out about what’s happening in your vacation area! Thank you for being a part of the Southern family, we’ll see you next month with tip!