1. Get insured before you go!
Travel trailer insurance in Alberta is inexpensive and gives you serious protection for the physical structure of your trailer, your liability once it’s unhitched from your vehicle (if it’s not self motorized) and even the necessary expenses to cover the cost of a replacement if your travel trailer should unexpectedly be destroyed or damaged irreparably during the course of your trip.
2. Keep your eyes on the road
Leave your cellphones behind and keep your eyes on the road ahead of you, both hands on the steering wheel. Distracted driving is one of the biggest causes of accidents in Alberta, so please be mindful of the path ahead of you. Pets should not be loose in your trailer, RV, or car, as these can be a big distraction, so consider a pet-safety harness leash or clip, or a crate/kennel to put them in that’s crash-safe.
3. Make sure you stop to eat
Eating while driving can be distracting, and while drive-throughs are especially convenient, multitasking can take your focus off of the road. If you are feeling peckish, pull off and stop to eat. This will also help you be more mindful when you eat so you don’t get indigestion.
4. Keep an emergency kit in case
Depending on the length of your road trip, you could end up getting really far away from home. Before you head out, prepare for the unexpected and keep an emergency kit on board, including water, blankets, cellphone, first aid kit, flashlight, jumper cables, candles, non-perishable food items, etc.
5. Do an inspection of your trailer and car before you go
Are both your vehicles road-worthy? Make sure to do a quick once-over or even a maintenance appointment at your local autobody shop to ensure everything’s in ship-shape. You’ll want to check wiper blades, fluid levels, tread levels, oil, and tire pressure. If you need to do any topping off, do that before you leave. Don’t skip out on patching or replacing a tire.
6. Never drive tired
They say that driving fatigued can be just as dangerous as driving under the influence. When you drive fatigued, your reaction timing is slowed and you don’t make as many sound decisions as you would if you were well-rested. So, if you start to feel like it might be time to take a nap or a break, switch drivers or pull off to get some ZZZs.
7. Use your GPS
Knowing the route is extremely important to getting to where you want to be. If you ever find yourself lost, you could end up in an unsafe neighbourhood or just somewhere you really don’t want to be. Plus, you might be on a schedule! Map out your course beforehand and include a GPS on-hand. If that GPS is your phone, turn off all other notifications and put it on car-safe mode. Use a phone mount or an in-vehicle infotainment center to access the GPS rather than holding it or putting it in a cupholder.
8. Report drunk drivers
So many fatalities each year are caused by drunk drivers. In fact, it’s known that multiple people each day die from drunk driving in Canada. Protect yourself and your passengers by staying alert as you can, report drunk driving, and do not stay in the left lane unless you’re passing. If someone drifts from the oncoming traffic, you’ll be right there for a collision.
9. Stock up on supplies
Never run out of fuel – or food! Keeping everyone safe and happy comes with keeping them full. Always keep backups on-hand, as well as snacks and a full gas can.
10. Have fun!
Road trips can be stressful, especially for the parents. Consider how this is a small time in your life that you want to enjoy fully with your family and friends. Have fun! Take a load off – this is one of the few opportunities you have to not think about work – take advantage of that!