According to the Travel Industry Association, Americans taking driving vacations will continue to grow this year with a 3.4% increase over last year. Here are several family road trip tips for keeping safe on the road this summer.
Check out the car in advance, including window wiper fluid, oil, water, lights, tires, jumper cables, spare tire and a jack. Make sure the tires are inflated properly for the load you are carrying, the temperature of the area you are travelling to.
Secure loose items in the car that may become projectiles in an accident. If you need to use a mobile phone, use a hands-free device or pull over to a safe parking area.
Have the family agree to safety and spending rules at least a day before you leave. Talk about emergency contact information and the importance of staying together. Always wear your safety belts and keep children in car seats or boosters.
Make a packing list and check off items as you put them in the car. Be sure to bring snacks, drinks, games, pillows and blankets, camera, sunglasses, toilet paper, water, and a flashlight. Let your kids make their own list and pack their own bags!
Plan several stops and leave room for spur-of-the-moment side-trips to town festivals, farmers markets and scenic overlooks. Have the kids mark up a road map with the places you plan to visit along the way.
Bring more than one copy of a list with all the important numbers on it: hotel phone numbers, contact names and addresses, etc. Keep one list in the car and one list in your wallet.
Consider purchasing travel insurance.