With a three-day weekend on the horizon, there are two things you can count on this Thanksgiving: traffic (and lots of it) as families hit the road to dine together, and a heavy police presence on the roads watching out for drivers who are impaired, distracted, behaving aggressively, or not wearing their seat belts.
Rock your road trip, and protect your car insurance rate, with these Thanksgiving long weekend safe driving tips:
- Prepare your vehicle for the drive ahead. Top up your car’s windshield wiper fluid, ensure that your tires are properly inflated, and remember to travel with an emergency roadside safety kit.
- Make sure you’ve got all your car-related documents handy. No matter where you're travelling this weekend, your car insurance coverage will follow you should something go wrong. Just make sure you have your driver’s licence, insurance documents, ownership and registration with you.
- Listen to the weather reports. If there’s rain in the forecast (or worse) adjust your driving to fit the conditions. Foul weather and poor visibility requires you to drive at a slower speed than what’s posted. Posted speed limits designate the fastest speed at which you can safely travel in optimal road conditions. When roads—and the weather—are not optimal, slow down.
- Look for less travelled routes. Major highways are everyone’s route of choice; try some of the smaller highways. In addition to less traffic, you'll also be treated to some beautiful scenery as the leaves are beginning to change colour.
- Only head out on the long drive when you’re well rested. Driver fatigue can result in poor driving decisions.
- Listen to traffic reports before you leave and while on the road, and make changes to your route as needed.
- Buckle up and make sure everyone in the car does too.
- If there is a collision on route, give emergency personnel the space they need. Slow down and move over when passing stopped police, ambulance, fire trucks, or tow trucks with flashing lights on; it’s the law and comes with hefty fines if ignored.
- Be patient because there will likely be traffic. Driving aggressively—speeding and tailgating—will only improve your chances of, at best, getting a ticket and, at worst, causing a collision.
- Don’t drive distracted. Put your phones on "Do Not Disturb," let your passengers select the music, and if you get peckish, eat at a rest stop.
- Budget time on your road trip for at least one rest stop to stretch your legs.
- Leave a safe distance between you and the car ahead of you.
- Always signal before you change lanes.
- Don’t drive while alcohol or drug impaired. Always have a designated driver if you’ve partaken in either.
- Unfortunately, all long weekends have to come to a close. As much as you might plan and prepare to get to where you want to go, don't forget to do the same for the return home.
On this Thanksgiving long weekend, take care when out on the roads because it’s about more than just keeping your car insurance rates low, it’s about arriving at your destination safely.
Updated regularly to ensure accuracy and relevancy.