Handy Hints For Summer Driving Holidays

If you’re planning a driving holiday this Summer, ensure you don’t stall by making the right preparations for your trip. Whether you decide to take your own car, or hire a set of wheels when you arrive at your destination, the Hertz guidelines below will help make sure everything runs smoothly.

If you choose to take your own vehicle, before you go, check that your car is in tip-top condition and is ready for the road trip:

  • Check oil, water, windscreen wipers and tyres (including the spare tyre)
  • Make sure you display a GB sticker on your car. If not, you are liable for an on-the-spot fine. If you have a Euro-symbol on your number plate then a GB sticker is not required when driving in Europe. However, outside the EU, a GB sticker is needed as well
  • Fit headlamp converters to avoid dazzling other drivers, and if your vehicle has xenon headlamps, book in to your local garage to reset them

Ensure you pack the following:

  • Spare bulbs - compulsory in Spain, Italy, Slovenia and Austria
  • Warning triangle - compulsory or recommended throughout the European Union
  • Fire extinguisher - compulsory in Belgium
  • Spare set of keys - A first aid kit - compulsory in Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Austria
  • A tool kit
  • Up to date maps of the region to which you are travelling
  • Most importantly, check with the tourist board of the country to which you are travelling, to ensure you are aware of any specific driving requirements or road laws imposed by the country. For instance, in Norway, dipped headlights must be used at all times (except when full beam is required).

If you don’t have the time or the inclination to undertake the above steps, then consider booking a vehicle with a reputable car rental firm like Hertz. Not only will the steering wheel be on the correct side - a huge benefit if you’re driving on the other side of the road - but the car will be almost brand new and it will have been serviced before you pick it up.

Things to consider when hiring a car for your trip:

  • Do you want the comfort of satellite navigation? Hertz offers Hertz NeverLost - a specifically designed system that can be fitted in all Hertz vehicles. It’s ideal for holiday makers and lists over a million points of interest, including restaurants, golf courses and local points of interest. It has cross-border capability so you can go from one country to another with no problem, and has a choice of 11 languages.
  • Think about the type of vehicle you want. Hertz offers various sizes of vehicle, and for those who really want to travel in style, there is the Prestige Collection of luxury vehicles to choose from. Or, if a basic set of wheels is all you require, think about whether air conditioning is a must.
  • Consider joining the Hertz #1 Club. It’s free to join, saves you time, gives you access to promotions and offers, and it means you don’t have lots of forms to fill when picking up your car at the Hertz desk - simply sign for your vehicle and off you go.

For more information about Hertz, or to book a car, log on to www.hertz.co.uk

Whether it's a hire car you've opted for, or your own set of wheels that you decide on, below are some tips whilst you're actually on holiday:

  • Don’t leave valuables on display in the car when it’s unattended.
  • Make sure you have the relevant documents to hand, these include registration document, insurance certificate, driving licence, contact details for breakdown services and your insurance company and your passport. Don’t forget, when you leave the vehicle, make sure you take all this documentation with you.
  • Don’t take risks, if you’re filling up with petrol, lock the car when you go to pay, and when you leave the car, ensure all windows and the sunroof are fully closed.
  • If you’ve got kids in the car, make sure you have water to keep them hydrated. Pack toys and books to keep them entertained and ensure they have enough space to sleep comfortably. If you’re driving to a hot country, ensure you have sun shade blinds fitted to windows.
4 June 2006 Staff

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