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As the summer season kicks in, many of us will be considering a trip away, but driving in unfamiliar places whether you’re in the UK or further afield can prove stressful. However, with a bit of forward planning and a careful approach, it shouldn’t be something you fear.
Taking some time to familiarise yourself with a few points and prepare for your journey will make life a whole lot easier. Take a look below at our top tips for a stress-free city break this summer.
1. Have a plan
It’s always wise to have a plan when it comes to driving somewhere new. With all the technology currently available, it won’t take any time at all to look on Google maps or streetview to get a true sense of your journey ahead.
2. Predict behaviour
Driving around large busy cities can be distracting – even you’re focussed and keeping your eyes on the road, other drivers can drive erratically. Be prepared for this by staying alert and watching out for sudden or unexpected manoeuvres.
3. Keep alert
Stay alert – there may be lanes and roads which are closed to cars in very busy cities. Cycle lanes, bus lanes and one way streets all require close attention, and if you are using a bus lane, make sure its during operational times or you could get fined.
4. Leave extra space
In larger cities, you will no doubt be sharing the road with a number of other road users such as motorcyclists and cyclist. Make sure you allow them extra space, particularly when over-taking. Often when stuck in traffic, motorcyclists will overtake – don’t hinder their progress just because you’re stuck.
5. Avoid changing lanes
Many large cities have an increased number of lanes particularly when approaching junctions and roundabouts. If there is a build up of traffic ahead, try to avoid changing lanes and ease off the accelerator to avoid tailgating – this will help to prevent any potential accidents from occurring.
6. Check your mirrors
It is a golden rule as a driver to check your mirrors regularly, and when you’re in heavy traffic it is essential to check your mirrors before any manoeuvre and signal well in advance if you intend to make a turning or change lanes.
7. Watch out for pedestrians
Watch out for pedestrians at all times. In busy cities, it is more likely that pedestrians could cross the path of your car when you’re least expecting it. Be prepared for this.
8. Don’t panic
If you’ve missed a turning or an exit don’t panic, find a suitable area where you can turn back, or continue with your journey until you find an alternative route.
9. Stay calm
Stay calm and don’t compete with others on the road. Stick to the golden rules above and you’ll be guaranteed to end your journey as relaxed as when you started it.