Sometimes we need to take a short break away from everyday city life for a few days. What better way to spend this time than taking a road trip!
There are many different places within driving distance from Dubai itself. We have listed out some of our favourite road trip destinations in our article here: (link to other article).
Whether you are driving for one hour or many, the key to a successful road trip is preparation.
We have taken many trips ourselves, so we have put together our top and most important tips below for you to take a read of before setting out on the open road!
Prepare for every eventuality
Without sounding too gloomy, preparing for all the different things that may happen on your road trip will mean that, should one of these things happen, it should be much easier and quicker to deal with.
It goes without saying that you must have car insurance for road trips. Car insurance covers costs should you be involved in an accident. If you are travelling in a rental vehicle, make sure you take out comprehensive insurance with the rental company.
You should also have travel insurance. Whether you are staying in the UAE or crossing over to another country, travel insurance covers you for so much more than loss of luggage on a flight. Should you need medical treatment you will be looked after, or if your belongings are lost or stolen, travel insurance will help here too.
Before you set off, check if there are any limitations on your insurance. For instance, if you are crossing a boarder into another country, will you still be covered? Or if you are planning to go off road, is there a maximum distance you can travel from the main road?
Before you leave, also note down the policy number and emergency contact number for quick help if needed.
Get everyone to do their research
You, and everyone with you, should research your intended destination to make sure you all get the most out of your trip. Each of you may find something different to each other, something you may have never known about!
Take a spare car key
If you have more than one car key, take it on the trip with you, but give it to someone other than the driver. If you lock your key in the car, or worse, lose it, then you will have a backup. Some cars lock themselves if the key is left in it, which can leave you in a sticky situation.
Take breaks regularly
If you are taking a long drive then you must take breaks at least every couple of hours, even if you are not sleepy. This will let you relax and allow you to be more alert again when you do start to drive again. If possible, share driving responsibilities.
Do not just reply on mobile maps..
Have you ever driven across the desert before? Are you sure there is going to be signal? You may run into areas without any GPS signal, so it is highly advisable to take a paper map with you.
Also make sure that your GPS device is fully up to date with the latest road details.
First Aid Kits – for you and your car
That’s right, we do mean a first aid kit for your car! Make sure that you have enough oil and water, perhaps taking some water with you. Check that you have a spare tyre and a jack. If you don’t, make sure you have good roadside assistance.
For you and your travel buddies, it is highly advisable to have a medical first aid kit. You never know what might happen. In this kit you should have disinfectant wipes and spray, Ibuprofen (fever), painkillers, bandages, mosquito repellent spray, anti-diarrheal tablets and plasters as a minimum. Also make sure you have water for yourself! If you broke down in the desert and had to wait for recovery, you will get very hot and very thirsty!
Prepare for travelling with children
If you are taking little ones on the road with you then you must prepare for even more eventualities.
Make sure you have the correct safety seat for your child. Have lots of snacks and drinks for the ride, and it would really help to have entertainment for them. If they fall asleep, lucky you, but that is unlikely isn’t it! Keep them occupied to keep your journey more enjoyable.
Carry a bit of cash – just in case
Many of us are used to carrying little or no cash at all, but when taking a trip out of the city it is advisable to have cash on you.
As they say, the journey is as fun as the destination!