The holidays are upon us and with them come a shift. It’s like we wake up December 1st and start a frantic, fast race to Christmas. And instead of taking this month on as a marathon – slow, steady, paced – we attack it and race furiously from event to event.
And that includes when we get behind the wheel. December is a crazy month for driving. As if more people on the road out shopping or traveling and bad weather wasn’t enough, when you place people who are stressed out from the season on the roads, it’s a recipe for disaster. So keep yourself safe this year by take a few minutes to look at these 8 Tips for Safe Driving, sponsored by State Farm.
8 Tips for Safe Holiday Driving
1. Leave Early. Plan to leave to get where you are going 10-15 minutes ahead of what you think you need. With extra people on the road, there will be traffic.
2. Know your Route before you Leave. Use your phone to map out the directions you need to take before you leave home to avoid getting lost or looking up directions while driving.
3. Stay off the Phone. This one should go without saying, but is always a good reminder, stay of your phone, don’t text, and keep your eyes on the road ahead of you.
4. Be Calm. Take a deep breath if you feel stressed. If you encounter another aggressive driver, don’t engage in aggressive behavior back. If you are feeling stressed before getting in the car, don’t go – it won’t make for an enjoyable experience.
5. Observe Good Driving Habits. Because you have left early enough, you don’t need to speed. Use your blinker. Stay out of the left lane except to pass. Let other cars in. All the good driving habits you were taught when you first got your driver’s license.
6. Stay Alert. Be aware of others driving around you as they may be stressed and acting rashly.
7. Make the Ride Enjoyable. Turn on some Holiday music. Pull through the coffee shop for a drink. Have a conversation with your children. Make the car environment a pleasant one and the stress will melt away. That said, don;t have too much fun that you get distracted from good driving habits!
8. Pay it Forward on the Road. It’s the holiday season! Let someone in your lane. Give the other car the parking spot. Stop and let those walking across the street go. Your kind gesture could spark a chain reaction of kind driving in others!
Here are some more great tips to avoid aggressive driving from State Farm.