How To Prepare for Your Summer Road Trip: The Ultimate Guide
With travelling abroad for leisure not currently permitted, many people are considering spending their summer taking a road trip around the British Isles. Whether you’re considering driving the length of the entire island from Land’s End to John O’ Groats, or coasting along the Jurassic Cliffs for a few days, this guide has all the information you need to make the most of your summer road trip.
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Taking a road trip is a great way to celebrate the end of lockdown, not least because you can traverse the entire country without interacting with anyone. And let’s face it, social distancing in the middle of the countryside is much more achievable than in the city.
Does Your Car Fit Your Needs?
A motorhome is a great option if you’re travelling for a longer period of time, giving you the comfort of home whilst travelling around to beautiful new places. A caravan may be a better option for you if you need space but are a smaller group of travellers. You can also drive these vehicles into campsites and feel secure during your overnight stay.
If you’re travelling alone and imagine yourself as quite the thrill-seeker, why not hire a motorbike? Feel at one with nature while the wind rushes against your body, and be confident that your fuel economy is at its most efficient.
Assess Your Vehicle
There are several things you should check before taking your car on a long-haul road trip. Consider getting an MOT test to ensure the safety of your vehicle, and therefore the personal safety of yourself, passengers and other drivers.
If you’re comfortable checking all the requirements yourself, remember to check the fuel and oil levels in your tank - you don’t want to run out of either! 1 in 3 vehicles is dangerously low in oil, which in turn can cause more irreparable damage to your engine.
Ensure your tyres are equipped to handle the roads, especially if you’re going across any uneven terrain. In general, you should check them for everyday wear and tear, but for a road trip it’s especially important to check tread depth and tyre pressure.
It may also be a smart idea to keep backup tyres in your boot before the worst happens; remember, if you prepare, you’re far less likely to suffer from bad luck and vehicular hiccups. If you don’t know how to change a tyre, here is a simple YouTube video to tell you how:
Although British summers aren’t the warmest in the world, they can get pretty hot - even more so when there are four warm bodies inside one vehicle. Make sure your air conditioning is working properly to give you some relief when the breeze is just too hot during the inevitable summer heatwave that will hit when you least expect it.
Plan Your Trip
You’ve decided you want to go on a road trip - but where do you want to go, and how much time do you have?
You could go on a themed tour of the British Isles, touring some of the most important places in British music. From Scotland to Liverpool to Manchester and down to London, you can explore the history of The Bay City Rollers, The Beatles, Oasis and even the Rolling Stones!
If you prefer fully embracing nature, why not visit some of the most important UNESCO sites across the United Kingdom? Journey through the iconic North Coast 500 for 516 miles of Scottish castles and beaches, along with the possible opportunity of seeing the Northern Lights.
If you’re more interested in exploring the north of England, venture to the Peak District to visit the oldest national park in England, or head further south to Wales for gorgeous views of mountains and sea-scapes in Snowdonia.
Even further south, whether you’re based in London or Bournemouth, make the most of Dorset by taking a short trip to the Jurassic Coast, England’s only natural World Heritage Site! While you drive along the coastline, keep an eye out for sailboats racing along The Solent.
Driving for long periods of time can get tedious, so battle your tiredness and boredom by creating an upbeat playlist of all your favourite tunes. Make sure you have an AUX cord to ensure good sound quality while you listen to the soundtrack of your summer.
Don’t rely on the radio as you’ll find that driving along the scenic route means your signal will frequently cut out - worse than having no music at all!
If you have children, think of some car games such as I Spy, or keep them entertained by downloading films and television shows onto your electronic devices. This will distract them from constantly asking ‘Are we there yet?’ and save you quite the headache as well.
Last But Not Least…
Make sure you get insurance that covers breakdowns for your car, van or motorbike. If you’re interested in buying a new vehicle, you can test one out by renting the vehicle for a temporary period over the holidays, to see if it’s the right kind of vehicle for your summer trip.
If you decide that the vehicle is truly for you, but you aren’t quite sure about the costs, go to a reputable credit broker who will guide you through car, van or motorbike finance and help make sure you have the most unforgettable road trips for years to come.
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