Using our ‘daily driver’ for a 2021 Staycation
The world has changed beyond belief in such a very short space of time. Things, at the time of writing, have undoubtedly improved now the vaccines are being rolled out en-masse, but with confusion around the legalities and opportunities to holiday overseas this year, for the 2nd full summer of the pandemic, thoughts are, understandably, turning to staycations instead for many families across the length and breadth of the U.K.
Of course, staycations don’t necessarily mean one will use a car to reach the final destination for a U.K holiday, but chances are, a car will be used at some point of the journey at least. And if this is your first holiday in the U.K, using your car to transport the family, and any camping or recreational equipment may require you to look at the capabilities of your car before you set off.
For starters, will your car ‘make it’. That is, is it reliable enough to drive you to your destination, and back again, fully laden, and round and about when you get to wherever you’re going also? If there’s no reason to doubt it’s reliability, it would be a worthy investment to ensure your car has recently been fully serviced and checked over, that you have breakdown cover, and that you have holiday insurance. Whilst your car insurance will generally protect you from theft, or accident etc, it won’t reimburse you for any losses incurred if you aren’t able to reach your holiday destination. There’s a train of thought by many, that because you’re holidaying in the U.K, that you don’t still need holiday insurance. But we would recommend that you do consider it.
Space within the vehicle is the next dilemma. The average family hatchback will easily transport a family of 4 fairly easily. The older the ‘kids’ the more compact the space will feel. Is it worth hiring a bigger vehicle just for this trip? If your internal space is big enough for the passengers, you could look to carry your family belongings on a roof box (you can hire these rather than buying) or in a trailer. Of course, if you are towing a caravan, you have greater options.
You’ll probably find that on a long distance trip, your vehicle will achieve greater (better) fuel consumption/MPG. Modern cars have ECU’s which will, over distance, achieve a leaner use of fuel than a typical city commute for example,. But nevertheless, you will need to factor in fuel costs and don’t assume fuel is at the same price wherever you’re heading to, as it is in your local town or city.
Given you are transporting your most valuable assets; namely yourself and your family, have a check over of your vehicle yourself before you set off. Don’t assume that because it has a recent ‘MOT’ that it’s fit for a journey. Tyres can puncture, oil levels can drop and bulbs can blow literally at any time. 5 minutes spent having a 2nd person assist you check brake lights, indicators, fluid levels (including screen wash!) will be time well spent.