Heading off on a big (or mini) road trip can be an exciting, sometimes life-changing expedition.
In the flurry of deciding what to pack, loading up the car and making sure the passengers are all set, it can be easy to overlook simple safety or life-preserving measures.
The first, and probably the most important, tip is to always make sure the car is stocked with enough water for you and your passengers if disaster strikes. If you break down in a remote area and have to wait for help to arrive or come by, you’ll be grateful for the forethought of having water reserves in the boot – especially if it’s during the peak of summer.
Consult a car-savvy friend or a seasoned automotive professional for tips on what you need to take along to counteract any vehicle-related issues. Whether it’s a jerry can of petrol (something that could quite literally save the day in an emergency), oil or water for the engine, even if you aren’t an expert in all things auto, knowing the basics of how your vehicle works could mean the difference between getting back on the road or being stranded for a good while.
Definitely consider packing a GPS when travelling in unfamiliar terrain. Thrifty has this covered for you by offering TomTom GPS units as optional extras with any of our rental car fleet.
Always pack a first-aid kit with basic essentials for any potential injuries that could happen. Australia is full of creepy crawlies that bite and sting, and if you are in a remote area, being able to perform basic first aid if a clinic or hospital is still a fair drive away is a great skill to have. Include some Band-Aids, bandages, mosquito repellent, Dettol, and a product that works to remove the sting out of bites. A tip? Aussie creation pawpaw ointment is a great natural product to use as a disinfectant and soother for cuts and bites.
Lastly, use common sense when travelling in remote areas. Fill up the tank at the nearest servo if you know there isn’t another one for miles and miles, don’t pick up strangers looking for a lift, and take regular eye breaks and mini-naps to ensure you retain peak concentration when driving.
Photography: Lincoln Fowler, Tourism Australia