Summer is rapidly approaching, and with it comes the prospect of summer vacation and travel. Whether you’re hitting the road for a family vacation or taking to the air to fly to your favorite water park or resort, travel is an integral part of having summer fun.
But what’s not fun is when a vacation goes horribly wrong. Lost credit cards, botched reservations, and minor mishaps are one thing, but it’s another to get stranded far from home — or even worse, find yourself in an unsafe situation.
There are all kinds of ways to get around in Texas, and each comes with its own potential pitfalls and the safety measures to help counteract them. With that in mind, here are some tips for staying safe during your summer travels — no matter how you’re choosing to go.
Air travel is one of the safest ways there is to get from place to place. But it can still be a major source of stress and frustration, so it makes sense to take some basic precautions.
- Wear sensible clothing. Wool blends or breathable cotton are great choices for varying temperatures. You should also dress comfortably and in something that’s going to let you move quickly, should you need to walking shoes are great choices, as are jeans, slacks, and flat shoes.
- You might choose to have a “run kit” in case of emergency. These are things you’ll want with you in case something happens, and your luggage is lost or damaged. A run kit might typically contain your passport, wallet, credit cards, medication, and whatever else you’ll absolutely need.
There are lots of things to see and do in Texas, and the road trip is one of the venerated traditions of summers. But road travel can be hazardous if you’re not careful, so be sure to take some precautions while you’re driving the family to the next state park or attraction.
- Texas is hot, and the last thing you want is to be stranded on the side of the road in 100+ degree weather. The best way to help avoid this: preventative maintenance. Make sure your tires are properly inflated, that you have a tank full of gas, that things like washer fluid and oil are where they need to be, and even make sure your car insurance is up to date. Car insurance can sometimes be expensive, so do some shopping around for cheap car insurance in Texas and see if you can save some money for your trip.
- Pack snacks, water, and a survival kit to prepare for the worst. If you do happen to break down, get your car as far to the side of the road as you can. Open the vehicle’s hood and leave it open to signal trouble. If you can, stay with the car until law enforcement arrives.
- Don’t drive while drowsy! Falling asleep at the wheel is a common cause of accidents, and the risk is higher on lengthy trips. If you have multiple drivers in the car, drive in shifts. If you’re having difficulty focusing or keeping your eyes open, pull over as soon as it’s convenient. Maybe stop off for some coffee.
- Cut down on distracted driving as much as you can. Resist the temptation to use your phone while on the road, and if you have children, set firm rules about any disruptive behavior while in the car.
While rail travel might not be the first thing you think of when traveling in Texas, there’s enough passenger rail in the state to possibly make it worth your while — but it’s also vital to observe safety during your travels.
- If you can, schedule your trip to avoid changing trains late at night, just as a precaution.
- Do some research to find out if pickpockets, delays, or other problems exist at the stations you’ll be traveling to.
- Keep your luggage as light and easy to carry as you can, and make sure that luggage has locks on it to keep your belongings safe.
- If you’ll be spending a lot of time in a train station, keep an eye out for suspicious individuals and try to sit in a well-lit area near other travelers.
- When waiting for a train, keep back from the edge of the platform to reduce any risk of falling onto the rails.
- Never cross train tracks to get to a platform!
Most travelers go on their vacation with little to no trouble, especially the serious kind. The odds are in your favor — but you can make those odds even better with a little preparedness and an eye towards safety. Make it a trip to remember for all the right reasons!