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On The Road

Long Weekend Driving Tips

When long weekend road trips get stressful, remember these tips to stay zen behind the wheel.

by Team Onlia

Driving on a long weekend can be daunting. More traffic, longer travel times and unpredictable weather can rile up even the calmest of drivers. But don’t let the stress get to you — just use these 5 tips on how to keep your cool on long weekend drives.

1. Put the phone away

It’s more important than ever to focus on the road. With mobile phone use leading to 1.6 million collisions every year according to CAA, the road ahead deserves your undivided attention. With more cars on the road every holiday weekend, the risk of a collision goes up.

Want to be a true beacon of calm and collected driving? Silence those pesky device notifications tempting you to check your phone while you’re driving. Ask your passengers to tune the radio, adjust climate settings, or even answer your phone for you! A distraction-free driver is a happier driver.

2. Be prepared for anything

We know Canadian weather is all over the place. Frankly, it seems particularly unpredictable right when our precious long weekends come around. And when the weather mucks up your weekend plans, it’s easy to get frustrated on the road.

Check weather and road conditions before you leave and double check that your roadside emergency kit is fully stocked. Knowing you’re prepared for any situation will help keep your trip stress-free.


3. Stay sober

Impaired drivers have no place on the road. If you're planning to indulge, wait until you arrive at your destination or have a designated driver before you hit the road. There’s nothing more stressful than a collision while you’re behind the wheel. Stay sober and avoid putting yourself and others at risk.

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4. Go back to the basics

Canadians take driving etiquette seriously. It’s part of our polite sensibilities. So when someone pulls a sloppy or inconsiderate (or downright dangerous) move on the road — like not using turn signals or leaving high-beams on — it can get other drivers’ blood boiling. Following basic driving rules isn’t just about etiquette, though — it’s the law. 

It’s easy to let the simple stuff slip over the years. By paying attention to the basics and reinforcing good driving practices, you can help keep our roads safer and calmer.

5. Don’t drive sleepy

Transport Canada reports that 60% of Canadian drivers admit to occasionally driving while fatigued and a whopping 15% admit that they’ve fallen asleep while driving. Holy moly. That is a scary revelation, considering that roughly 20% of fatal collisions involve driver fatigue.

If you’re feeling tired or restless, make a pit stop. Take a bathroom break, fill-up on snacks or take a walk around to get your body moving and your blood pumping. On long drives, a quick refresher goes a long way. Learn more about the effects of driving drowsy. 

Pro-tip: Take a break from driving when you notice these common signs of fatigue:

  • Trouble keeping your eyes focused or open
  • Wandering or disconnected thoughts
  • Realizing you’re slowing down unintentionally
  • Late braking
  • Can’t remember the last few kilometres driven
  • Veering onto the road shoulder or centre line

Now that you're all set safety-wise, make sure you have the right car insurance coverage before you hit the road. Get a quote from Onlia today. 

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