This continuation of a previous blog, the guide for beginners who are to make their first car trip abroad, will take you through the next step of the preparations. Having done some research on what documents will you need abroad and chosen the right car hire company, it is time to find out about obligatory equipment and traffic regulations in your destination country as well as plan the route.
Find out what you need to have in the car
Once you have arranged your car hire, it's time to start planning the finer details of your trip. A good place to start is by finding out exactly what you are legally required to have in the car with you while driving. Typically, this will involve a combination of documentation, such as your driving licence, passport and insurance information, and emergency kit. Both the former and the latter can vary depending on the country you're visiting, so be sure to keep all your research focused on the right place.In terms of emergency kit, the kinds of things you might need include a fluorescent jacket, a warning triangle, a breathalyser and, if you require glasses to drive, a spare pair. These are examples of things you might need when driving in various countries, like Austria, France or Spain.
Familiarise yourself with the rules of the road
While all of the above steps are essential, for any newcomer to driving overseas, actually getting on the road will be the chief concern. Start by familiarising yourself with the rules of the road in your chosen destination; there are plenty of online resources that offer comprehensive information for driving in different countries, such our driving information guides
.Remember to look out for any tips on driving etiquette, too, as this can vary widely from one country to the next. In the UK, for instance, you can expect someone who flashes their lights at you to give way to you - but in some European countries, the opposite is true. It is these elements that can be particularly confusing when driving abroad, so always exercise caution.
Plan your driving routes
Another important step is planning the various driving routes you'll be taking. Of course, you might not know them all in advance, but things like getting from the airport to your accommodation are easy to prepare for. Take the time to research the best routes, and also to look each to identify any potentially tricky spots. Additionally, even if you will have a satnav, it's wise to invest in a map just in case - you don't want to be caught out if the satnav fails.
Take it easy
Once you're on the road, remember not to push yourself too hard. Driving can be a tiring activity at any time, but even more so when you're overseas and need to concentrate all the more, so take regular breaks. Similarly, it can be a good idea to share the driving with someone else if possible to ease the load - particularly if they've driven abroad before.