Being stuck on the road at an ungodly hour is the worst fear of most roadtrippers. It soon transpires to a nightmare if the collapse happens in an unfamiliar area. Be it a tire puncture, low battery, a slight electrical or technical issue, fuel exhaustion… anything can jostle your plans during a road trip. How do you deal with these bumps, twists and turns? This is where roadside assistance becomes your savior. Most car makers and even car insurance firms package roadside assistance when you purchase a brand new car. You can even purchase it as a standalone policy from your insurer. It does work after all like an insurance during unforeseen engine breakdowns.
Based on your chasse, even if are hardy enough to absorb the shocks, the following roadside assistance tips can make sure to help you survive the trip and survive it spectacularly.
- Insurance papers up to date:
Please go through the inclusions and exclusions of your car insurance policy as it will help you figure out the best ways to seek help in trouble. Some policies are endowed with roadside assistance while for some, it has to be bought by paying additional premium.
- Be clear about your destination:
Even if it is an impromptu trip, be clear about the destination and how far it is and in what time you intend to cover the distance. Keep a note of halt points and the number of halts. And most importantly, have the emergency garage numbers as well as their address.
- Don’t panic:
Easier said than done. But it is up to you to stay calm and keep up the morale of the group (other passengers). If people are tensed, half the focus would be gone on that instead of finding a way out of the fix.
- Fuel up every time you see a petrol bunk:
It is ironical that what we often require most is what we give ourselves the least. Keep the tank full to avoid breakdown, to drive around looking for direction and well, in emergency.
- GPS or not, ask for directions:
Nobody knows it all, including the driver. So do not detach yourself or hesitate to request for help. Start with your co-passengers who could also be seeking navigational clarity or might have another route (perhaps easier) in mind. Being open, reliable and able to reciprocate support will be more fruitful use of time.
- Take breaks when needed:
Have you ever travelled with someone who repetitively asks you to wait until the next halt to take a well-earned break? That cannot be fun, especially, when you are the one driving. The rule is simple. When you feel like a break, take it. Being hyper-focused on being there on time, can take away a lot of fun from the journey.
- Be open to alternative routes:
When challenged with a random or unforeseen situations like a civil riot or closed roads, this is one thing that will keep you on the driver's seat. Don’t let a necessary detour put a damper on the tour. In fact it could be more empowering as you are playing with challenging ‘what-if’ situations.
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