Because the pandemic shut people in for the longest time possible for anyone to imagine, it seems people can’t get enough of taking vacations this year. Whether it’s summer or winter, people are always on the ready.
Speaking of winter, Thanksgiving is over and that signals another year of preparation for the cold months ahead. It also means planning for a winter holiday trip. Here are some tips on how you can plan for your holiday trip this coming winter:
What to Prepare Before Setting a Schedule for Your Trip
Start your plan with a date. This will help you determine which places to visit and when. There are places that will be closed for the winter, while there’ll be ones that’ll have lots of visitors. Ideally, the best places to go to are the ones that’ll be safe from crowds. In the same way, it’s best to choose dates with low or regular demand travel. It is way cheaper to travel during these times, especially if you’ll be taking flights.
Once you have a scheduled date, you can create an outline of your trip. It will help you plan what to prepare before leaving, where to go, what to do when you get there, what attractions are open, where you’ll be staying, what modes of transportation you’ll be taking, and what alternatives you can consider when one option suddenly becomes unavailable. This plan is apart from your daily itinerary.
With an outline of your trip, you’ll find it easier to organize your trip. An organized trip can help you become prepared should anything go wrong while you’re on vacation.
With your trip almost set, you can then book accommodations, restaurants, and tickets to attractions or events. If you’re flying, CNN Travel highly recommends booking your flights early to avoid getting sold out or paying steep prices.
Be Ready to Respond to Emergencies
Whether you’re going on a road trip or taking flights to get to your destination, you need to be prepared for emergencies.
For a road trip, you need to get your vehicle winter road-worthy first at least weeks before your scheduled vacation. You can perform an initial check of your vehicle if all its parts are working properly — lights, horn, windshield wipers, windows, and brakes. If everything is functioning as it should, you need to change your vehicle’s tires and replenish its motor fluids.
A winter road trip, which will expose you to slippery and icy roads, requires snow tires. They provide more traction when you’re diving, which ensures you can prevent accidents while on the road. Make sure that all your tires have the right air pressure. You’ll have to monitor this even during your trip because tires tend to lose air quicker in cold temperatures.
A winter road trip also requires using the right kind and amount of fluids in your vehicle to ensure road safety. Your vehicle should have enough engine oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, and power steering fluid. It should also have the right windshield wiper fluid and antifreeze. Finally, it should have a full tank at least a week before your trip. This ensures water doesn’t collect in your vehicle’s fuel line.
After all your initial inspections, bring your car to your trusted local auto repair shop to have it professionally checked by an auto mechanic. Consider getting everything repaired and serviced before taking your road trip.
Once your vehicle is road-worthy, equip it with the essentials — a first aid kit, emergency kit, and winter vehicle kit. A first aid kit can prepare you for emergency medical needs. An emergency kit, however, can prepare you if you get stuck in inclement weather. It should contain warm clothing, blankets, extra food and water, a flashlight and extra batteries, and a portable phone charger. Your winter vehicle kit, on the other hand, should contain a compact shovel, ice scraper, road flares, tire chains, jumper cables, and a portable car battery charger.
If you’re renting a car though, ensure all safety checks are set and up to date.
Have the Right Information
Before starting your road trip, download a roadside assistance app, so you’ll know who to contact if you’re faced with a roadside emergency. Apps can help you get located easily, so respondents can come to you quickly.
You should also use a GPS device and bring a map with you in case you get lost. Update yourself with the latest travel and weather advisories. Roads may be closed when there’s bad weather. A GPS or map can also help you navigate alternative roads when you get closed out.
A winter holiday trip can be challenging preparing for. However, you and your family can enjoy it better if you have everything planned out. Consider the tips above to help you plan your next winter holiday