Tips Tuesday: Green Holiday Travel

Preparing your Vehicle for Holiday Travel

December 1, 2010 by  
Filed under Holiday Travel Tips

No one wants to have their holiday travel plans ruined due to their vehicle breaking down, so make sure you give it plenty of attention before hand. Complete a thorough check of all the routine items on your vehicle. The oil should be changed and you will want to check all the fluids including the transmission fluid, windshield wiper fluid, and brake fluid.

Don’t wait until something breaks on your vehicle to replace it, especially when you are traveling for the holidays. Carefully inspect all of the hoses for signs of wear as you never know when they will end up breaking. If you haven’t used your windshield wipers for a while make sure they are in good condition.

Have someone stand behind your vehicle so you can make sure both of your turn signals work as well as your break lights. Replace any bulbs that are burned out or seem to be dim. Do the same for your headlights on both low beams and high beams. This will ensure other vehicles are able to see you coming and know when you are planning to stop or to turn. It is a good idea to carry fuses in your glove box so that you can replace any that may burn out during your travel for the holidays.

Your tires are very important when you are traveling for the holidays. Check the wear patterns on the tread to make sure they are in good shape. Of the two front tires are wearing unevenly you may need to have your vehicle aligned. You may find it is time to rotate the tires on your vehicle as well. This involves moving the front ones to the back and the back ones to the front.

Depending on the time of year when you travel for the holidays, you may experience bad weather. Make sure you have a survival kit in your car that includes tire changes which many end up being mandatory to drive on the roads in some areas. You also want this survival kit to include a flashlight with fresh batteries, flares, food, water, a first aid kit, blankets, a car jack, and a gas can.

It is a good idea to make sure you have a cell phone will you as well. Most models come with a battery charger that plugs right into your cigarette lighter so you don’t have to worry about the battery running low while you are traveling for the holidays. If you don’t want to get caught up in a lengthy cell phone contract, look for those offered at retail stores. They are inexpensive and they work well. However, you buy the amount of minutes you want for the phone in advance. When the minutes run out you can choose to buy more or simple get rid of the phone.

It is never a good idea to be in a vehicle without seatbelts for all passengers. However, some states don’t require the use of a seatbelt so people don’t pay attention to them working or not. If you are traveling out of state for the holidays you may be going through those that do require them and you need to be prepared.

Accidents can still happen even when you have properly prepared your vehicle for holiday travel. Seatbelts and car seats offer you a way to reduce the chances of serious injury if such an event does take place. In your glove box you should have a disposable camera so you can take pictures of the accident scene for your insurance company. Make sure you have a pen and paper handy as well so you can exchange insurance and personal information with the other party involved.

Thousands of people choose to travel for the holidays using their own personal vehicle. Doing your very best to make sure your vehicle is in excellent working condition will help you to arrive at your destination safely.

Ways to Save Money for Holiday Travel

December 1, 2010 by  
Filed under Holiday Travel Tips

Many people want to travel for the holidays but they don’t feel like they can because their budget doesn’t allow for it. Yet there are plenty of ways you can raise money to be able to do so. The sooner you start making a plan and determining how much money you will need the more successful you will be. Come up with as accurate of an amount as you can so you wont’ fall short. If you overestimate the amount of money you need for holiday travel then you can enjoy it later on.

Make a commitment not to touch the money you save for holiday travel under and circumstances. Place it in the bank or in a piggy bank that you have to break to get into. This way you won’t be tempted to remove any of the money for another purpose. The money you save for holiday travel will safely continue to grow until you are ready to travel.

Everyone needs to remove clutter from their home now and then so get it done and have a yard sale. Price the items cheap so that you won’t have to haul it all back into your home again. Making some money off the items you no longer need is better than not making any at all. You may want to place some of the items on the various online auctions so that you can get a better price for them. Do your research to see what is selling on these sites so you can have a good chance of selling yours.

Take a close look at your income and think about how much of it you can reasonably put away for holiday travel. Even if it is only $10 a week you can start putting it away and it will add up quickly. If you get paid every two weeks there will be months when you get three pay checks. Make a plan to save at least ½ of those paychecks for your holiday travel plans.

You may find making some adjustments to your family’s budget can help you to save enough money for holiday travel as well. Instead of paying for a cup of coffee on the way to work each day make your own. Rather than going out to dinner and to a movie consider ordering a pizza and renting a movie. All the extra money that you save needs to go towards your holiday travel plans.

Ask your boss about any additional shifts or overtime hours you can have in order to save money for holiday travel. This means you may have to give up some of your free time but it will be a worthwhile sacrifice. Let other people know you are for hire too so they can pay you to baby sit, clean their house, or paint their garage. These little projects can be very fun and add up to some nice cash for the holiday travel plans you have.

If you are traveling for the holidays to see your family or friends ask them about a no gift rule if you want to go for Christmas. Explain to them that you will be saving all your money towards coming to see them for the holidays. The amount of money you will save on gifts quickly adds up, and being able to spend time with your family and friends will be a gift you can’t put a price on.

Look for excellent deals on holiday travel as well. It will be wonderful if you find a cheap flight or a discount of the train or bus. This means you will have less money to save up for your holiday travel. It may take some effort and some sacrifices but it will be well worth it when the holiday of your choice rolls around and you are able to go where you want to go.

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