There are many advantages to hiring a car for a vacation. These include being able to move about at your own pace, saving money on taxi rides, and seeing sights you might not get to see with a regular tour. 

Having a private car for a long journey is not only safer, but it also keeps the family together and makes the trip more enjoyable. It is especially crucial if you’re travelling with young children.

Every parent knows that travelling with kids is like running a marathon. You need lots of preparation and make room for stops for bathroom breaks. You’ll be extremely exhausted when you get to your destination. 

Being stuck in a car for several hours is difficult for young children because they can’t run around as they like, and their entertainment options are limited. It can be stressful for parents to have to try to keep kids strapped in place for long hours.

So, if you’re planning your next trip with your little ones in tow, and you’ve never tried a private car rental service before, here are a few key things that will help make your holiday hassle-free.

Pre-book your car online

If you’ve come to a city by aeroplane, booking a car at the airport can be more expensive. Your options on available vehicles may also be limited. Even if you’re not flying, pre-booking your car will allow you to choose a car that will comfortably fit your family and has any particular needs you might have, like reclining seats or a video entertainment system. You should also look for a rental company that includes car seats and boosters for kids, as these are quite bulky for you to carry them around.

Plan your route

Map out your journey. Break up the trip with several stops. This way you can tell the kids in the backseat, “We’ve got one hour to the ice cream shop!” so you can help manage their expectations. 

Stopping gives everyone a much-needed break for fresh air and to stretch their legs. Make sure you include petrol stations and restaurants for bathroom breaks. You might even be able to make a side trip to a scenic outlook or a museum along the way. 

Pack sensibly

Travelling by car, your space will be limited. The more people on the trip, the more bags there will be. Consider what you need to bring versus what is available at your destination.

Softer duffels are easier to stuff in the boot than hard-case luggage. An empty icebox can be sturdy enough to hold toys to entertain your kids. Most importantly for little children, have lots of extra snacks, car-friendly food, and a refillable water bottle so that they can feed themselves whenever possible. 

Get insurance

You can take safety precautions like ensuring the kids are in their car seats and boosters. Unfortunately, accidents do happen. Don’t forget to secure insurance just because you can save on expenses, or you think it’s unnecessary. Consider purchasing private car excess insurance to cover your voluntary excess premium. You can get these online and at a fraction of the cost of your voluntary excess. 

Prepare emergency numbers

Keep emergency contact displayed in an accessible place in your car. In case of an accident, especially one that you didn’t cause, you can save your family from the stress by securing the services of a car accident management company. 

Before you start your trip

In a rush to get to your destination, you might pile on the luggage and hustle the children into the car. However, be sure to inspect the car thoroughly when you receive it. A few things you should look out for:

  • Any dents and scratches that might be there already and make sure they’re sufficiently documented; otherwise, you may be held liable for them when you return the car
  • Car seats adjusting and reclining properly
  • Functioning air-conditioning and heating system
  • Controls and warning devices working well
  • Age-appropriate children’s car seat or booster that isn’t past its expiration date and with safety harnesses intact

The Bottom Line

There’s nothing worse than your holiday being ruined by car trouble. Take the time and the necessary precautions before you leave your house. Car issues can throw off even the most carefully planned vacations. 

Goodbye Excess is an award-winning private car excess insurance provider that will help you save on voluntary excess. It’s an easy way to lessen the stresses of hiring a car for your next holiday. Contact us today to learn more!