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Family vehicle suitcases for holiday

Family vehicle ready? Be prepared for the half term journey

Hooray half term is nearly here with many parents and children across the UK looking forward to driving their family vehicle on holiday for a well-deserved break, together with spending some extra quality time, over the coming weeks.

The weather is still a little unpredictable at this time of year and the roads can be grimy. If you are planning on getting away during the half term week and preparing to drive to your destination, then here’s some important tips to remember, making the journey as safe as possible.

Family vehicle Checks

Nobody wants to break down and especially when you are taking the whole family. By making some competent vehicle checks within good time before you leave, it will ensure a safer journey.

  1. Clean the family vehicle so that all lights and number plates are visible.
  2. Check that the oil level is correct and not low.
  3. Feel around the tyres for any imperfections or low tread, as this could require a tyre change. Your driver’s manual will state the correct air pressure, so check each tyre and top up if necessary.
  4. Top up windscreen wiper wash and make sure that wipers work well to clear the screen.
  5. Review when your car last had a vehicle service. If its near on or over 12 months, then book into a local workshop i.e Stourbridge Automotive.

Preparing for the journey

If you are driving a long distance, then ensure that you take some provisions and prepare for the journey ahead.

  1. Top up with fuel at your local garage before you set off (motorway service station fuel is often more expensive than local garages).
  2. Pack provisions – You must be prepared that you could break down anywhere and in places where you might not have access to amenities, so take plenty of water and snacks, just encase.
  3. Take extra clothing or blankets in case you get stuck in the cold weather and so that the whole family can keep warm.
  4. Plan your journey before you leave. Look at the map, so that you know in advance which roads you will be driving on, calculate the length of the Set off within good time so that you don’t have to rush and try to minimise night driving on roads which are unfamiliar.

Driving abroad

If you are heading over to Europe this half term, then it’s worth checking the criteria for the countries you’ll be driving through as each one is individual. Coupled to this, there may be different regulations for the UK following Brexit and so it’s important to plan and make sure all documentation is in place.

  1. Use UK stickers and not GB, as GB is no longer valid for UK drivers, following Brexit. (GB & UK in bold font)
  2. Read up on COVID regulations as you will need to take tests within 48 hours of departure. Check criteria for individual countries and for the return journey back to the UK.
  3. Check that your car insurance covers driving abroad as following Brexit, insurers don’t always automatically include this anymore.
  4. Make sure that you have the correct breakdown equipment onboard your vehicle in terms of the country(s) you are driving in as without it you could be fined.
  5. Make sure that your passports are in date and valid within 6 months of your return journey.
  6. Find out more about the regulations for driving abroad at:

For more information on booking our maintenance and service facility for your AudiBMWMINI, Mercedes JaguarLand Rover or Range Rover, please contact our team. As an accredited supplier and family vehicle service team to these car marques, Stourbridge Automotive provides thorough family vehicle checks and maintenance support by our on-hand and experienced workshop team. To book a service or to find out more, please contact us.