Australia is the perfect setting for a big road trip, with a wide range of terrains and long stretches of open road. Preparing for a road trip is an exciting experience, but forgetting the practicalities of the trip can land you in danger in the Aussie outback.
Check out some tips on how to prepare for a road trip of a lifetime on the beautiful shores of Australia.
Choose Your Road
Australia has a lot of different terrains and not all routes are suitable for unseasoned drivers. Decide what you want out of your trip, choose the attractions you would like to visit and plot out the safest route that connects them.
Taking a little extra time to plan out the safest route will save you time and help to avoid any problems along the way. It’s important to think carefully about your route as the roads in Australia can be more treacherous in rural areas and road laws can vary from state to state. To avoid getting caught out, read up on your road safety laws before you set off.
Spring Clean Your Vehicle
Before you set off make sure your car is ready to roll. Whether you always keep a clean car or have rubbish poking out from under the seat cleaning out your car will help you to spot any problems early.
After your spring clean make sure your car is within its servicing period. There are some things you can check yourself, such as making sure that the oil and filter have been changed recently and all water reservoirs are full. However, taking your car for a full servicing will help to put your mind at ease before the big trip – and save you trouble later down the track.
Learn To Handle Your Wheels
The outback can be unforgiving and even expert drivers can get caught out, so it’s prudent to gain a better understanding of your car before you head out. Learning the basics of car maintenance before you leave will help you to be more prepared in case of an emergency.
Take some time and fish out your car’s user manual for information tailored to your car. Be sure to download or print out a copy to take with you so you can refer back to it if needed. Other things you can do alone are checking out your tyres and learning how to change them, checking your suspension and understanding how to check your car battery for damage.
So you’ve planned it all out – now time to pack all the practical items you’ll need on your trip. Check what items will be most helpful along the way according to your route and make sure you have adequate cover if the worst should happen. It’s important to pack well but pack light. An over packed vehicle will impact on how it handles – this is especially true with four wheel drives. Keeping your stuff centrally located will help to combat this. It is also important to keep a physical map on your person to save you from getting lost in the outback. You can also download a map of your route and use the GPS feature on your phone to keep you on track.
Some good examples of practical supplies for your road trip are spare tyres, extra oil, plenty of water and spare fuses. Due to the remoteness of some routes it’s a good idea to take a radio with you in case of emergency. Some outback routes require you to check in with police when you begin and when you get to your destination, so be sure to research your route well.