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Keep it cool on the Summer road trip!


Date Posted: 19-07-2017

4 minute read

They’re off. The PE kits are stuffed in the cupboards and the sibling squabbles are already breaking out. They won’t get off their screens and the boredom is all your fault. Apparently.

Time for a road trip. And time to get out and enjoy this stunning summer we’re enjoying (we hope it lasts).

Be it a short-hop to the local zoo or a long-haul trek to the coast, driving at the height of the summer holidays can be thirsty work. And whilst we’ve all been there, some timely advice on keeping you and the family cool on the road is 4 minutes well spent.

01 Plan your trip

Start early. Very early if you can. Avoid the queues and find a comfortable pace. Plan your stops; 15 minutes for every two hours is a sensible idea. Make some big stops and little stops, so you arrive at your destination suitably relaxed.

02 Get sensibly dressed

Loose and comfortable. No new shoes… keep it well-worn and comfortable. Light sports clothing is great, if you’re prepared to venture out in your ‘active wear’.

03 Check the car

It might not be midwinter, but the rules still apply. Check your tyres and all fluid levels. The midges and flies won’t be making friends with your windscreen, so keep washer fluid topped up. Open the windows before you leave to cool the interior. If your car is safely located, run the engine and air conditioner for a couple of minutes before setting off.

04 Get the Air Con right

Ah… the air con. The fuel consumption thing isn’t a myth (popular opinion suggests around 7-8%) . However, there are smarter ways to use it.

Firstly, don’t blast yourself into hypothermia. Keep it moderate, controlled and consistent. It will cost you less and make a much more comfortable journey.

Point the vents to the sides and ceiling. This will keep a steady flow throughout the whole car, not just the front seats.

Opening the windows won’t save you much. It will create drag, increase your fuel consumption and make a lot of noise!

05 Keep the kids smiling!

There are plenty of distractions if you’re wanting to keep them off the screens. You’ll find a big list of ideas in our guide here!

06 Big breaks and little breaks

If you started early and planned it well, you’ll be able to make a big stop for lunch and one or two little stops for refreshments. Trying to make time on a burning hot August day isn’t the most sensible idea. Give yourself and the family plenty of Welcome Breaks!

You’ll find a choice of your favourite brands to suit the temperatures, with a range of salads and healthy sandwiches from Waitrose, Subway and Pret, BK and KFC offer kids’ menus, or you could choose to pick up Children’s lunch bag from Waitrose (20p of which goes to Children in Need!).

To keep you suitably cool, why not try an Iced Tea or Frappuccino from Starbucks or a cooling shake from BK? Then grab some chilled drinks from Waitrose or WHSmith for the journey onwards.

07 Get some fresh air

Why not enjoy an Al Fresco Welcome Break? You’ll find picnic and outdoor areas at all our Welcome Break locations. Ideal to kick-back, enjoy some free Wi-Fi and give the kids some stretching time before the final leg.

08 Make an overnight stopover!

If you wanting to get to the beach first or making an early flight, why not stopover at one of our Welcome Break hotels? We have Ramada and Days Inn hotels close to many big destinations and airports, with family rooms from as little as £29*. You’ll enjoy stress free travel in the evening and rest peacefully knowing you’ve only got a short trip in the morning.

Check our “Hotels for Airports” page here and book the right hotel for your departure airport.

09 Don’t forget the dog!

Dogs can’t dress for summer, so keep the in-car temperature sensible and never leave them alone in the car on a hot day. Not even for a few minutes.

We love dogs at Welcome Break. We provide dog walking areas near all our car parks and a drinking bowl close to all our entrances. They’re even welcome to stay at our Days Inn Hotels, if you’re planning stopover. Make a hotel booking here.

Wherever you’re going, we hope you enjoy a suitably chilled road trip and we look forward to seeing you along the way. Don’t forget to tweet that #MotorwaySelfie when you stop off at Welcome Break. If we retweet it, you could win a £5 Welcome Break voucher!

* Use code: Breakaway when booking.

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