You have sealed a great business deal or booked that family road trip. Here are some handy tips to ensure that driving abroad is a pleasant and relaxed experience for you. All that remains is to pack your bag, choose a hire car and hit the road.
1. Plan For Success
Get the right car for the occasion, book a car that will accommodate you, any family members and luggage successfully. Do you need to hire a car seat for a younger child? Are you going to be doing city or long distance driving? Ask your car hire firm for recommendations if you are unsure what type of vehicle you will need.
2. Check It Out
You can avoid many unwanted surprises by checking that your car is in full working order before your travel. Check your tire pressure, oil, turn signals, hazard lights and high beams, locks and window wipers. It may take a little time but these simple checks could save you a whole heap of trouble when driving abroad!
3. Adjust For The Road Ahead
Are you going to be driving on the left or the right? Familiarise yourself with the rules of the road, especially speed limits. If you will be driving on the right, take special care to orientate yourself to traffic flow, overtaking, merging, junctions and roundabouts. If you are driving a manual hire car, you will be shifting gear with the opposite hand, so allow some time to practice on quieter roads before you attempt fast city driving.
Darren Cronian of TravelRants.com has been interviewed in national newspapers worldwide on the challenges presented to travelers who are driving abroad on the opposite of the road, “It can make it more difficult to judge things spatially, so check very carefully when overtaking, turning, parking and backing.”
4. Worldwide Insurance
Whatever country you are or will be driving in, you are required to be able to produce a full driver’s licence, registration documents for your vehicle and a current certificate of motor insurance, covering everyone who will be driving the car. To avoid unnecessary problems, make sure all your documents are in order before you travel.
5. First Aid
It is equally important, whether you are driving a hire car or your own for any length of time, to carry a first aid box and a warning triangle that can be placed at the back of your vehicle in the event of a breakdown or accident. Check if your car hire firm will supply these items or invest in your own.
The time you choose to spend in making sure you are well equipped and ready for the road ahead is a valuable investment in having an enjoyable journey. And one thing is certain, you are worth it!
What’s your favourite, funniest, most James Bond-like road trip story? We’d love to hear about it.