For stress-free driving on the holiday, it’s best to plan ahead. Here, insurance comparison experts, https://www.mustard.co.uk/car-insurance/ offer their advice on planning the perfect driving on the holiday this summer.
Choose your destination before you set off
Spontaneity is all well and good, but the reality is that being spontaneous can be stressful, especially if you want to make pit stops but everywhere you go has been booked out months in advance.
Having a target destination and route in mind means you can make the most of the attractions along the way and make your reservations before you leave home.
Prepare your car
Whether you decide to go a couple of hours up the road, to the opposite end of the country, or even further afield, your car should be up to the journey.
If it’s due its annual MOT, book your car in with enough time to ensure that any repairs can be carried out if needed. Otherwise, make sure you give the essentials a thorough check (or ask your local garage), for example:
- Car oil and coolant — your car’s manual will show you what the correct levels should be.
- Tyre pressure — don’t forget to assess all four tyres including their tread, and if you’re towing a caravan, double check what pressure your tyres should be set at.
- Lights — including headlights, indicators, and brake lights.
- Screenwash and windscreen wipers — change wipers if they smear or drag across your windscreen, screenwash should be topped up too if needed.
- Fuel — fill your tank or fully charge it before you set off and if you have an electric car, make sure you know where you can plug in en route.
Packing for your road trip isn’t just about remembering the fun stuff like wetsuits, or games and camping gear, it’s about remembering what you might need ‘just in case’.
For example, car essentials that should be kept to hand include:
- A map (in case your sat nav doesn’t pick up reception)
- Phone charger
- Fuel can
- Torch and batteries
- Sick bags and travel sickness tablets
- Water and snacks
- First aid kit and any medication you need
If you’re travelling to Europe, it’s a good idea to also have a global health insurance card (which replaces the European version if yours has expired). Cards are available for free to UK citizens at NHS.UK.
Also bear in mind that different countries have different laws about what you must keep in your car. For example, in many parts of the EU, it’s mandatory to have:
- A warning triangle
- Reflective jacket
- Headlight deflectors
- First aid kit
- UK car sticker (a GB sticker is not enough)
Check you’ve got the right car insurance
Needless to say, whether you travel within the UK or to Europe, you and everyone else driving must have suitable car insurance. If you don’t, you risk a fine and penalty points, in the worst-case scenario, you could also be disqualified from driving.
So, if you decide to share your time behind the wheel with other friends or family members and need cover, think about temporary car insurance. These policies are considered separate from any other car insurance policy you have which means if you make a claim, it won’t affect the no claims bonus on your annual car insurance plan.
If you’re driving to Europe or beyond, make sure your policy covers all the countries you’re driving through. You’ll also need proof of car insurance (as well as your photo driving licence and V5C logbook). For countries outside of the EU, you may need an international driving permit (IDP).
If your car cover’s up for renewal, you can compare what’s on offer at mustard.co.uk. What’s more, quotes are tailored so you can be confident about finding a policy that suits whatever adventure you have planned. Plus, with their Cheapest Price Guarantee, great value is given, leaving you more cash to flash on your travels.