The Festive season is officially here and it’s definitely time to make those Christmas travel plans. For many of us December means travelling longer distances to be with family and friends. The roads can be busier, and the weather conditions can be a bit more challenging, but with some planning ahead you’ll be home and ‘Rockin’ around the Christmas Tree’ with your loved ones in no time at all!
1. Plan ahead! It may seem obvious but don’t leave thinking about your journey until a day or two before you have to leave. The roads in the run up to Christmas can be notoriously busy and if you can avoid it then try to travel outside peak times such as Christmas Eve. Perhaps you could take an extra day as holiday to allow you to leave earlier, or ask your employer if you can work remotely from the destination you’ll be travelling to.
2. Get a Ford Winter Check on your car to give you the confidence that it’s fully prepared for longer journeys. The Winter Check includes a 30-point vehicle check, a check and top up of essential fluids such as anti-freeze, a battery check and a tyre safety check.
3. Before you travel, check out a route planner to make sure there are no lengthy diversions and to get an estimated journey time. If you’re driving an EV then make sure you consider your range and where you might need to charge along the way.
4. Only attempt to drive what is a manageable distance for you, and make sure you can recognise the signs of fatigue. You can become more tired driving at night, especially if you leave after a day of work. If you do feel affected by tiredness then take a break and have a coffee. If you’re driving a long distance to be with family then consider stopping overnight part of the way or share the driving if you can.
5. Pack your vehicle with winter essentials to keep you safe and comfortable should a breakdown occur. Check out our ‘Winter Driving Essentials’ blog for what to include.
6. Don’t leave valuables on display in your car. This is standard advice all year round for items like your mobile phone and laptop, but if you’ve been out shopping for Christmas presents or are travelling back home with them then check they aren’t on display when you leave your car. The boot is the best place to keep them hidden away.
7. Bring some festive treats. You might have planned to grab something to eat in service stations along the way but these can be busy at peak travel times. Having your own food to eat on stops will save you time and money. You can also be certain you’ll get what you get what you really want!
8. Entertain the children! If you’re road-tripping with little ones then remember to take plenty items to entertain them such as books, games and maybe a Christmas film on a tablet to try and make the journey fun for them.
9. Last but not least, no Festive road trip is complete without an excellent playlist. Make sure you download it to your phone to save on data and in case you don’t have signal for part of your journey. It should include all the classics such as Last Christmas, Fairytale of New York and of course, Driving Home for Christmas but everyone has their own favourites!
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