Rocking The Great Canadian Family Road Trip
Tips to have a safe driving experience
The second the kids have been freed from the daily grind of grade school for the summer is the signal for Albertans to head out in the station wagon or minivan for The Great Canadian Family Road Trip. A fantastic way to see new sights and experience our home and native land, motoring holidays are also an inexpensive way to get away from it all with the entire brood for some quality bonding time. Thanks to Canada's birthday being celebrated with free admission to our National Parks, this is definitely the year to take a tour. To help out, your friends at E & R Automotive Clinic have some tips to make this the best road trip ever.
Before you go
- Make sure your vehicle is inspected by certified technicians to be road worthy for your travels. This will provide a great deal of peace of mind for both the driver and the stressed significant other who has been pressed into duty as the Navigator for the journey.
- Have someone agree to stop by the house to make sure your home is kept secure, newspapers don't stack up and the lawn is mowed so thieves don't target your home. Calling your news provider and halting delivery while you're haunting the highways will save you from wasting your newspaper subscription.
- Create an itinerary but limit the hours spent driving. The journey is the point, not the destination, so don't stress everyone out by motoring more than two or three hours at a time. As well, frequent stops for sightseeing, bathroom breaks and leg stretching will do a lot to stop the "He/she is looking at me! Make them stop!" blues.
On the road again
- When driving in wilderness areas such as in the National Parks, be even more vigilant than usual, as wild animals are a common sight on roadways and can dash in front of your vehicle unexpectedly.
- Watch for the vehicle in front of you needing to slam on their breaks to avoid wildlife encounters as well. If you must stop for wildlife, be aware of the cars behind you, in case they didn't read this note about being more vigilant in wildlife areas.
- Don't be in a hurry. Whether in one of our National Parks or a tourist town like Sylvan Lake, remember to enjoy the driving adventure as much as the destination. There are interesting things to see all over this beautiful province but racing to get somewhere means you will surely miss most of it.
- Pack lots of snacks and water. Not only do they provide vital sustenance and stave off hunger pangs, but kids can't argue with mouths full of granola bar.
- Most family bickering occurs right before supper when everyone is hungry and irritable. We all get antsy when we haven't eaten and our internal clocks know it's way past feeding time. By stopping in plenty of time for the night, you can ensure everyone eats during regular meal times.
- Pack canned food and emergency rations. Everything from car trouble to unexpected road closures can mean you miss the next stop on your itinerary. By packing non-perishable back-up meals, you can avoid worrying about whether you will make it to the next town before the restaurants close.
- Turn off the cell phones. There are so many better things to look at than a screen.
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