If you’re driving home for Christmas, you’ll know that it’s the best feeling ever
Read our tips on how to enjoy a stressless drive to festive fun!
One of the greatest things about Christmas is gathering together with family and friends for a good old festive catch up. Everyone makes an effort to see those that matter most, taking the chance to share gifts, food and fun.
While some might be lucky to live and work near loved ones, others must make an annual trek to be reunited with relatives and pals. It may be a long slog but those of you who make the effort will all appreciate why driving home for Christmas is the best feeling ever.
DRIVING HOME FOR CHRISTMAS
Of course, the anticipation of the drive starts long before your travel date. Perhaps you’ve taken a few days holiday from work and are counting down to a well earned break. Maybe you’re frantically finishing off a term’s worth of college work in an effort to the clear the decks so you can chill out over Christmas. Or, like many, you could be dashing around from performance to performance as you beam with pride at your children’s theatrical offerings.
Whatever your build up to the festive season, if you’re driving home for Christmas, you’ll all eventually end up in one place – your car!
Here’s where the fun begins! With gifts, luggage, food, maybe a spouse or partner and a couple of kids to squeeze into your car, it can be a bit of a challenge. You could be tearing out your hair by the time you’ve remembered that game of Twister that Aunt Beryl asked you to bring.
And the dog! Don’t forget the dog!
Once you’ve negotiated the packing, and thanked your lucky stars that you plumped for the estate instead of the saloon, you can sit back and enjoy the ride…that is until you hit the traffic.
TOP TO TOE IN TAILBACKS
This is where you really get to appreciate your car comforts. With half of the country also trying to drive home for Christmas, and the other half merely going about their usual day-to-day travel, those roads soon clog up. While everyone’s car is different and their trip home unique, there’s plenty of common ground with everyone trying to get from A to B safely.
Time to make use of those widgets that have been included in your car precisely for a trip such as this. It’s no doubt freezing outside and as the cold penetrates the car, your thermal underwear might not be enough to keep you warm! Luckily, instead of feeling the chill, you’re chilling out thanks to the air con, heated seats and maybe even a heated steering wheel.
Feeling nice and cosy, you enjoy your car’s economical auto stop/start feature as you join another traffic jam. With the queues building, you take the wise decision to pull over at the next coffee shop, let the rush die down and grab that gingerbread-flavoured latte that’ll cost you a small fortune. But hey it’s Christmas!
GOT RED LIGHTS ON THE RUN
Back in the car and even though it’s raining (or snowing), not even the continuous stop lights can dampen your mood now! You’re thankful that you booked your car in for a winter check up in preparation for your journey, giving the technicians chance to replace your wipers and top up your windscreen wash so that you can see all those pretty lights.
They had a look at the tyre tread too, to make sure it was deep enough to keep a grip on those icy roads and tested all the lights, so you know that others can see you coming, even in the winter twilight.
And because you know that they checked your car’s engine coolant level and gave the battery the once over, you‘re confident that no matter how much road congestion you hit, your car is up to the job!
TO PASS THE TIME AWAY
Even if you haven’t got any companions to keep your mind off the queues, you can tune into your favourite radio stations, audiobooks or podcasts to help pass the miles.
In fact, if you’re travelling solo, you won’t have to argue about who has control of the stereo buttons – although with steering wheel controls, the driver is ALWAYS right!
With a clear view out of those windows, thanks to that ever so efficient demister, any passengers can add a little entertainment of their own with a game of ‘I Spy’ or number plate bingo as they watch the miles pass by. Traction control and ABS helps you to confidently keep the car under control, even in slippery conditions, as you play along.
SOON THERE’LL BE A FREEWAY
At some point, every driver hopes that the traffic will fall away, giving you chance to chassé into that 6th gear and engage cruise control.
Now you’re on the home stretch, your head fills with warm memories of past Christmases.
You think about the festive traditions of your family and friends;
that special person who gets to put the star on top of the tree;
the pub in which all your old school friends congregate on Christmas Eve;
the tatty old decoration you made when you were 5, that mum still insists on displaying every year;
and not forgetting the Brussel sprouts that have to be cooked to perfection – even though no one eats them!
LOOK AT THE DRIVER NEXT TO ME, HE’S JUST THE SAME
Glancing around at other drivers, you note that everyone looks equally wistful. Or are they like you, beginning to feel a little tired after a long journey?
You’re nearly there! As you finally pull up in front of your destination, you realise that your sister has bagged the prime parking spot with her SUV…again! But it doesn’t matter, as you watch her unload gifts, luggage, food, maybe a spouse or partner and a couple of kids, you’re thankful that you made it home safe and sound.
You squeeze your car into the last space, using the handy parking sensors, climb out and give yourself a well earned stretch. As you head towards the house, your head fills with a thousand memories of Christmas and anticipation of the days ahead, thoughts of the return trip pushed firmly to the back of your mind.
For many of us, Christmas is a time of year when our cars play an important role; our festive celebrations just wouldn’t be the same without them.
So enjoy your car (and your journey home) this Christmas. Remember, if you need any motoring advice – on everything from that all important winter check to a brand new estate to accommodate your gifts – at any stage over the festive period, pop into your local Swansway Group dealership.