Now that we’re a month into the hottest season of the year, we’re sure that many of you have plans to travel out of state or even out of the country. Due to this, it’s important to review the below summer travel safety tips to ensure that your vacation is as stress-free as possible!
Summer Driving Safety Tips
If you’re driving to your summer travel destination, rest assured you will not be the only one on the road; with millions of high school and college students out for summer break in addition to those taking time off from work, the potential to be stuck in traffic or involved in an accident increases exponentially. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, the amount of accident-related fatalities consistently increase in the second half of the year starting in July. However, there are precautions you can take in order to avoid an accident on the road:
- Plan to leave early in the morning or late at night. The worst times to be on the road are during rush hour and over a long weekend, including the days leading up to one. If the family is up for it, try to leave early in the morning or late at night in order to avoid wasting time and gas on bumper-to-bumper traffic. However, be sure you have plenty of caffeine in your system since studies show that driving tired can be just as dangerous as driving drunk!
- Make sure your car insurance policy is up to date. If you’ll be driving out of state, you may be wondering if your car insurance policy will cover you there. Lucky for you, the answer is (generally) yes! Just take some time to check with your own insurance carrier depending on what state you’re in, as coverages vary by location.
- Stay alert for distracted drivers. According to a recent study by Travelers and TrueMotion, summer travel comes with a 10% increase in distracted drivers on the road. Aside from not driving distracted yourself, make sure to be proactive and look for distracted drivers so that you can avoid driving near them.
When Traveling out of the Country
Traveling abroad is a great way to become immersed in a different culture, experience tourist attractions you’ve always wanted to see, or even test your skills in learning a new language! However, there are safety concerns that are important to address with those who will be accompanying you on your trip abroad:
- Plan ahead as to how you’ll be getting around. If you’re traveling to a city, make sure you know how their public transportation works. If you’re traveling somewhere more suburban or rural, look into whether transportation apps such as Uber or Lyft function there or if they have a taxi service. As exciting as it may sound to drive in a different country, it can be dangerous depending on where you’re headed; traffic laws differ from country to country as well as styles of driving. Getting in an accident would be challenging as well considering auto insurance policies generally don’t extend overseas. However, if you do plan to drive, you’ll need an International Driving Permit (IDP) ahead of your trip.
- Check the country’s laws beforehand. This is very important. You don’t want to find yourself in trouble with local authorities for doing something that is not illegal in the United States, so take the extra time to look into the differences in regulations between where you live and where you are traveling – it could save you a lot of hassle in the future!
- Have local cash on you at all times. Depending on where you’re going, not every location will accept American credit cards. Because of this, it is essential to exchange your American dollars for local currency early into or even before your trip abroad. Furthermore, we recommend that you store your local currency in multiple places just in case your cash gets lost or stolen; store some in your bag if you have one, in your pockets, and back at your hotel/Airbnb/etc.
Wherever in the country or the world you’re headed, it’s always a good idea to brush up on these summer travel safety tips to make sure your vacation is as stress-free as possible. Happy travels!
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