How to Drive Safely on a Summer Road Trip

Winter has finally drawn to a close, which is great news for motorists.

However, while icy roads and cold starts in the early morning might pose a challenge, this shouldn’t imply that summertime is easy for motorists.

Summer can be difficult, too – but the difficulties take a different form.

4x4 iceland road trip

If you’re planning a long road trip in the summer, it’s especially worth doing a little bit of planning and preparation. Let’s take a look at what that might entail.

Plan ahead

It’s best to start planning your road trip sooner rather than later. The earlier your preparations begin, the more time you’ll have to take action to correct a problem.

You don’t want to notice that your headlights aren’t working on the morning that you set out.

In some cases, it might be advisable to get the car serviced before you set out. If you have a service scheduled for later in the year, it’s often a good idea to bring it forward – or to have a smaller service in the interim.

The day before your trip, you’ll want to check that the tyres are properly inflated. You can do this yourself, or you can visit the inflation machine at your local filling station.

Check the tread depth, too. Even if your tyres are above the legal minimum (which is 1.6mm), you might get better grip, and better fuel economy, with a new set. Buy tyres online and get the fitted ahead of your trip.

Make sure that you have all of your essential supplies packed. This should include emergency rations, a first-aid kit, and a spare tyre.

You might even pack a blanket, in case you become stranded at night. It’s particularly important to take these precautions if you’re going to be travelling through a remote part of the world.

Road Trip Tips for First Timers

Finally, we should think about the route you’ll be taking. Your travel itinerary should be included in your holiday plans.

If there are a number of special destinations you want to visit, then setting out when you intend to visit, and planning your route accordingly, will help to ensure that you you’re never rushing from one place to another. 

On the other hand, it’s still worth leaving yourself time to do something spontaneously along the way. After all, a few surprises can help to make your trip that much more exciting.

Practice defensive driving

If you’re heading out on a long trip, safety should be a priority. The longer you’re on the road, after all, the greater your risk of being involved in a collision. You can reduce this risk by practising what’s called ‘defensive driving’. 

Defensive driving is a term used to refer to a series of techniques and tips, which will cumulatively make a difference to your safety on the road.

These include maintaining a safe distance from the vehicle in front, signalling in advance, and remaining alert and attentive throughout the drive.


Getting the best from a long road trip means building up the right habits. If you go through the same procedure before taking every trip, you’re less likely to forget something.

If you worry about missing a step, then you might get everything written down using pen and paper. That way, you can tick off the steps as you take them.