Stay safe while travelling this holiday

safe travelsafe travel
safe travelsafe travel


Stay safe while travelling this holiday

During the festive season, many of us travel to families in different provinces. Travelling is usually a fun and enriching experience for everyone involved, but there are very real risks that come with road trips, bus journeys and flying.

It is important to know what to do to keep yourself and your family safe while travelling, in order to lessen the chances of experiencing an accident, theft or other such incidents. Below is some sound advice to follow for those embarking on journeys this festive season.


If you are road tripping, follow this advice

If you are planning on driving to your festive destination, there are some important pieces of information to remember, including the following.

  • Make sure your car is roadworthy, and ensure you have a spare tyre and all necessary equipment.
  • Practice courtesy on the roads. Rather than driving with aggression, let people pass you if they want to, and allow plenty of room for trucks.
  • Have a designated driver if you are planning to stop off for a leisurely liquid lunch on the trip.
  • Always wear your seatbelts. This includes passengers in the back seats, as during an accident they could be thrown from the vehicle.
  • Have a second driver if you are going on a long trip. This allows the primary driver to rest while the second driver takes over, eliminating any accidents due to tiredness.
  • Stick to the speed limit, and avoid travelling too fast on long stretches of flat road.
  • Check the weather throughout the trip in order to find out what your visibility levels are going to be.
  • Always be on high alert if you have to stop at any traffic lights, as these can be hi-jacking opportunities for thieves.

It is imperative to have a vehicle that is in working order, so always ask petrol station attendants to check your oil, water and tyre pressure at regular stops. Never drive until just above empty, many remote areas do not have petrol stations and you may end having to stop in an unsafe area. Be sure to watch out for animals crossing rural roads or freeways.


Research where you are staying

If you are staying at a resort or are stopping off on your journey, be sure to research where you will be staying beforehand. Inns, such as those on offer from Country Hotels, often have websites with information on the area they are located in. You should read up on what areas of the town are considered safe, and whether or not there are any known scams or mugging “hot-spots” to avoid.

Look up the hotel you are planning to stay in, and read the reviews. Many a time, you will be able to ascertain how safe your belongings will be if you have to leave them in your room for an outing.


Guard your valuables

When travelling via road or even if you are simply walking around a town as a break in the trip, be sure that at all times you know exactly where your valuables are. When sitting at a restaurant or when driving, never leave your handbag or satchel unattended. An unattended bag is easy to snatch and grab, a popular form of theft in many areas of the country.

Make sure that you do not show off your jewellery or items such as cameras and cellphones, because these can make you a target of muggings. Rather, put these items away in a backpack or moon bag which you can keep close to your body. In a car or bus, try not to take photographs out of the window, which can make stealing your camera or phone easier.


If you are travelling by bus, follow these tips

Keep a small first aid kit with you, including plasters, hand sanitiser and rehydration fluids. Also pack healthy snacks, so you will not have to eat greasy takeaway meals and feel bloated or ill while on the road.

Keep your valuables within view or on your person at all times. You may have a long journey ahead of you, and losing sight of these items at a pitstop can mean that you have no documents or money on you for the remainder of your journey. Pack a power bank for your cell phone and other devices. Not having a way to contact your family in an emergency situation is something you will want to avoid.


Final thoughts

Safety is highly important during the holiday season, even more so if you are planning on travelling. If you research the areas you are stopping in and passing through, you will be able to avoid any unsavoury areas, and your trip will be safer and more enjoyable. It is also important to remember that it is a happy time of year, so be sure to pack fun family games and snacks for the journey ahead.


safe travel