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Top tips for taking a road trip in an accessible vehicle

Since the Covid-19 epidemic staycations have become far more of a popular choice for people when planning their annual getaway. Many staycations involve long road trips across the country, but that can be a daunting prospect for those that require wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAV).

If you’re a wheelchair user, there is no need to be worried about a road trip in your accessible vehicle. With just a little planning in advance, can still enjoy the beautiful scenery and landmarks along the way, making the road trip part of the holiday.

These useful tips will help you to make the most of your road trips, whether they are long or not so long.

Factor extra time for journeys

It’s a rare thing for a road trip to go perfectly to plan. The weather, traffic, and several other factors can add time to your road trip. Therefore, it is always a good idea to build in some extra time into your schedule. This allows for additional stops if necessary, to take a break from the road, or even just enjoy a little sightseeing if the opportunity strikes. Not feeling rushed in reaching your destination will make the road trip all the more enjoyable and relaxing.

Plan your route

Google Maps is a great starting point for planning your route, but you are usually just provided with the quickest route, as opposed to the route that takes into account our needs. Plan your journey around any special considerations you have, which has accessible stops, attractions, and hotels if necessary, along the way.

Strategic Rest Stops

The call of nature comes for us all, so wheelchair-accessible restrooms are a must for road trips. Just knowing there is a place you can stop and get out of the car for a little while, will take a lot of the anxiety out of the trip, allowing you to relax and just enjoy the journey. Read a book, watch the world go by, and even have a little doze, knowing that there will be a rest stop coming up soon if you need one.

Make sure you know how long you plan to be driving each day and plan for a stop every few hours.

Pack for all eventualities

Bringing your own snack, meals, and drinks gives you more control of when you need to stop, saving you breaks for using the restrooms or for taking in the sights. Consider having a cooler with drinks and healthy snacks, so you can keep hydrated and cool during long driving periods. Avoid high sugar snacks and drinks, as they can cause a serious sugar crash, which is not good if you’re driving.

Also, packing your own food means that you limit the contact you make with other people, which may be an important factor for you if you have been shielding during the pandemic.

When you pack the car, make sure you know where everything is and within reach. It’s also a good idea to pack a few extras in the car, such as deodorant, disposable toothbrushes, and painkillers.

Don’t forget about comfort

If you’re not comfortable in the car, you’re not going to enjoy the road trip part of your staycation, no matter how well planned the journey is. Pack a few extra cushions to ease any pressure points so you are always in a comfortable seating position. Some cold or heat packs are also really useful if you experience muscle, joint, or bone pain when sitting in the same position for long periods of time.

If you are renting an accessible vehicle, there are a few things you should check before you sign the papers:

  • Are the seats comfortable and do they recline for maximum comfort?
  • Is the wheelchair loading mechanism easy to operate and/or is there enough space to store your wheelchair and everything else you need for the road trip?
  • Does the car ride smoothly? Take it for a short test drive to find out.

A comfortable journey is a happy journey.

Enjoy the ride

If you have planned well in advance and followed these tips to make your trip as comfortable as it can be, then there is no reason not to just sit back and enjoy the ride. Taking a long road trip in your wheelchair accessible vehicle can be a really pleasant experience, on that you will be eager to repeat on your next staycation.

For help, speak
to one of our team
call 0333 331 3770

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