Preparing For The Ultimate Summer Road Trip

As the days get longer and brighter, you might be thinking about taking a road trip. But before you pile into your car and crank up the tunes, it’s important to do some preparation so your journey is as smooth as possible. 

Read on to find out how to transform a bang-average summer road trip into an unforgettable journey.

Maintain your car

Although living costs are soaring in the UK, it’s important to keep up with your car maintenance as this is the foundation of a stress-free road trip. According to statistics, in the first quarter of 2024, there were almost 8,000 breakdowns. But the worst part is that most of these are preventable with proper car care. 

Here’s a pre-trip checklist for your car:

• Fluids and filters: Ensure your engine oil, coolant, brake fluid and windscreen washer fluid are all topped up and at the correct levels. Consider replacing the oil filter for optimal performance.

• Tyre check: Proper tyre inflation is crucial for safety and fuel efficiency. Check your tyre pressure against the manufacturer’s recommendation (usually found on a sticker inside the driver’s door jamb) and don’t forget the spare! Inspect the tyres for any signs of wear or damage.

• Lights and: Make sure all your headlights, brake lights and indicators are functioning properly. 

If you’re finding multiple problems with your car, then it might be best to schedule a thorough service check or upgrade your vehicle before you set off on your journey. Cars like the new Vauxhall Astra offer plenty of boot room, meaning you won’t be squishing your passengers in for the journey when packing your belongings. Make sure to take fuel efficiency into account when shopping for your new car as this could help you to save money not only on your road trip, but in the long term.

Plan your route

Spontaneity is great but a loose roadmap can lead to detours and wasted time. To make sure your road trip gets off to a good start, research your route beforehand. 

Don’t forget to factor in things like rest stops, scenic detours and any roadworks or congestion. 

You can do this the old-fashioned way using maps or you can use online tools like Google Maps or Waze.

Pack the essentials

Pack light… but don’t forget the essentials! Focus on versatile clothing suitable for a range of weather conditions. In the UK, the weather is changeable, so pack some layers in case you encounter some unexpected temperature changes. 

You’ll also want to pack some comfortable shoes for any exploring and a swimsuit if you’re planning a seaside dip. 

As well as suitable clothing, don’t forget to pack a first-aid kit and some emergency roadside supplies like a jump cable and torch.

Consider entertainment

Long stretches of motorway can lead to boredom. To help pass the time, download playlists, audiobooks and podcasts using services like Spotify. 

If you’re still bored, you can always try your hand at some classic car games such as I Spy!

With a little preparation and the right mindset, your summer road trip can be the adventure of a lifetime as you reconnect with friends and family, making memories somewhere new. 

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