In general, life can be stressful, and traveling in an unknown city only adds to the pressure. In addition to anxiety, other factors present safety risks. Stress-based feelings and safety hazards can combine to create a risky driving experience. While you can’t control all of life’s stressors, you can make your driving experience an intentional one and reduce the risks. In this post, Bay Area Auto & Truck Rental provides driving tips to help you keep your cool and stay safe during the holidays.
Prepare for the Road
Take some time getting everything and everyone situated before you hit the road. Load up your rental car or SUV so that all fit comfortably. Place any items you’ll need while driving in the passenger cab. For instance, make sure the kids have things to keep them comfortable and entertained. Additionally, make snacks, drinks, and other items easily accessible and within arm’s reach.
When you rent a vehicle, whether a van or anything else, be sure to adjust the seat’s position and all mirrors to accommodate the driver’s needs. If using GPS, plug in the destination address and take a moment to view the step-by-step directions. Taking this step gives you your bearings, and prepares you for the drive. When you’re ready, you can hit the road confidently.
Limit Your Distractions
You may provide devices for the kids as you travel. However, we don’t recommend the use of electronic handheld devices in our holiday season driving tips. That is, of course, unless you use Bluetooth for driving directions. Still, we encourage you to focus more on the audible instructions as opposed to the visual maps. Moreover, it’s best to place the phone in a device holder or dashboard mount instead of holding it and looking away from the road. In either event, remember never to use your phone for texting, doing an online search, or anything else that takes your focus away from the road.
Stay Calm & Be Intentional
We began this post by acknowledging that travel can be stressful, which is why we’re providing holiday season driving tips. Knowing this, it’s wise to have some self-regulation skills in your toolkit to avoid getting angry and stressed on the road. Below is a list of things that can help get you going:
- Practice deep breathing to stay or regain a sense of calm.
- Do some light stretching every time you stop (and even make it a point to stop to stretch and move).
- Play light, ambient music that settles you and helps you to focus.
- Be aware of your five senses, especially as it relates to driving. Notice everything around you with your eyes, feel the steering wheel and how fast you’re traveling, listen to what’s around you, and so forth.
- Drive defensively. Focus on the road, be intentional, and drive in a way that prepares for all possible variables.
Have Fun & Hit the Road
We hope these holiday season driving tips are helpful as you prepare to hit the road. Of course, you can’t do that until you reserve a rental car. Check out our rental fleet and request a reservation online. Otherwise, call Bay Area Auto & Truck Rental at (281) 337-8395 to rent a car in Houston.