When you head out on the open road for a trip, are you truly prepared for a travel-related emergency? If you are, then you are in the minority. The vast majority of travelers are taking some serious chances out there. Few people stop and take the time to actually consider the worst and it can lead to some horrific situations. Oddly enough, the preparations are rather easy if you take the time to do them.
Here are five important steps towards being prepared for a travel-related emergency:
Always have communications in place
Having a cell phone in the world today is absolutely vital. You simply can’t blow it off and go on a trip without considering this important step. Some locales are quite deserted and not having a phone could leave you stranded in a really bad way. Carry one cell phone at a minimum and most people like to carry two. One to use in general and the other to leave unused and fully charged. An extra battery can work as well.
Make sure someone knows your itinerary
You should have contacts at both ends of your trip that are aware of your plans and where you are going. They should know the intended route and should be updated if things change. This ensures that if something happens, you will have someone looking for you and somewhat informed about where to go. Contacting these folks occasionally throughout your journey is a good thing as well because they can note where you are in your trip.
Bring along food and water
They are kind of essential and if you break down you will be ever thankful. The last thing you will want to be doing is hunting a mirage in the desert for water or trying to trap wild game for supper. It sounds crazy but it happens to people all the time. Pack up several gallons of water and some long lasting, non refrigerated foods to keep you going in an emergency. One day you may be quite thankful about that.
Make sure your car has back up options
Roadside assistance is a wonderful thing people. Pay the small extra charge and take advantage of the benefits. You also need to have a first aid kit, a car emergency repair kit and plenty of tools in the trunk. Spare hoses, duct tape and all the various specifics your car needs should be packed as well. Basic repairs in the middle of nowhere are possible if you have the right tools.
Know your area and situation
This is perhaps the most important thing and probably one of the most overlooked. If you are going to be in a cold weather environment, prepare for that. Make sure you bring extra blankets, de-icer, etc. The same for arid and hot environments like is found in Arizona and Texas for example. Knowing your situation and the dangers that it might present makes it easier to prepare accordingly. Think it through and you will be in great shape for your trip.
Have you been involved in a travel-related emergency? If so, how did you handle the situation?