Protecting Your Vehicle While Traveling During the Holidays

Protecting Your Vehicle While Traveling During the Holidays

The holidays are here. There probably has not been this much anticipation for the holiday season in many years. This has been a challenging year for everyone in western North Carolina. Learning how to work from home and taking on remote learning with your little ones has been incredibly difficult. When you add in the uncertainty about jobs and health, it has truly been a unique time. 

As the holiday season approaches, many Asheville area residents are planning their travel itineraries, while those who will remain in the area know there will be some intense traffic throughout the weeks of Thanksgiving and Christmas. Unfortunately, there are more vehicle accidents than virtually any other time of the year. 

Whether you are staying local this year or traveling a distance, we want to help you avoid dents, dings, and vehicle damage.

Here are five tips for avoiding accidents during the holiday travel season. 

Tips for Avoiding Dents and Dings During the Holidays

1) Plan Your Travel Around the Busiest Travel Days.

You only get so many vacation days each year. Your time off may dictate when you travel; however, if it is at all possible, you will significantly reduce your risk of accidents by planning on traveling on the least busy times during the holiday weeks. Sadly, Thanksgiving weekend, New Year’s Day, and Christmas rank 5, 6, and 7 for fatal traffic accidents. The roads will be the most crowded on the Wednesday and Sunday of Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, and New Year’s Eve. Try to plan your driving before or after the high volume times if at all possible, even if you are staying around town.

2) Stay Away From the Busiest Roads.

In addition to avoiding the busiest highways and secondary roads. If you are heading out of town, you can expect I-26, I-40, and I-240 to be jammed on the busy days we mentioned above. If you are staying around town, you might use alternate routes to the interstates, especially on busy days. You may also try to take the long way around downtown and the interchanges around I-240 if you find yourself driving in the city.

3) Use Your GPS Even if You Know Where You’re Going.

You may have made the drive to Grandma’s house and back a hundred times and then some. You do not need your map app to help you find your way there and you may disagree with the route it suggests. However, many GPS navigation apps provide more than turn-by-turn directions. They will alert you to accidents, traffic jams, disabled vehicles, and other potential hazards. Just for this trip, consider using the GPS map app. 

4) Avoid Busy Parking Lots.

For some, part of the allure of the holidays is shopping for the perfect gift for your friends and family. It is a wonderful thing to show how much you care about the important people in your life. Holiday parking lots are unfortunately a hot spot for vehicle damage. Rogue shopping carts, a flurry of vehicles, and excess distractions increase the chances of incurring dents and dings or being involved in a fender bender. While the sales may seem enticing, if at all possible, avoid the busiest parking lots during the season. Try to do your shopping during the week and lower traffic parts of the day. 

5) Make Sure You Car Is Well-Maintained.

One of the keys to avoiding accidents and vehicle damage is staying on the road. A worn tire going flat can damage a fender and lead onto the side of the road in a hurry. An engine failure due to old or leaking oil can leave you stopped in a precarious position. A brake failure could cause a fender bender. Before you hit the road for the holidays, make sure your car is ready for the trip.

First Aid Collision Is Here to Help Repair Vehicle Damage

In the unfortunate event you do find your car dented, dinged, or worse, bring it to us. Minor damage can lead to rust and corrosion if not repaired as soon as possible, especially as we move into winter where salt will be used to treat the roads around Asheville. We wish a safe and happy holiday season to all; however, if you do end up in need of auto body repairs, contact First Aid Collision.