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Driving to Florida?

Tips to make your trip smoother.

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The luggage is loaded, the gas tank is full, the cooler is full of drinks and you've made sure little Suzie's favorite "blankie" is packed. You check the house "one more time" and the front door closes as everyone scrambles to the car taking their favorite seats. Families anticipate vacations, but planning a vacation that involves driving requires more than loading the luggage and having the right map. Attention to a few details before you pack can help make sure you reach your destination safely.

To avoid an unexpected roadside emergency, invest in preventative automobile maintenance. Get your automobile ready for summer vacation travel. In case of an emergency, it is a good idea to have a kit in your vehicle that includes:

  • First Aid Kit
  • Jumper Cables
  • Hand Tools
  • Flashlight with new batteries
  • Jack
  • Gloves
  • Cellular Phone

Another consideration would be renting a vehicle for your vacation. The family sedan is many times not suited for long trips and renting is often cheaper than the cost of the wear and tear on your own vehicle. Look for coupons offering a free class upgrade giving you a larger vehicle for the same price. Reservations should be made well in advance of your trip to insure you get the vehicle you want and do shop around for the best deal. To make it easier here are a list of rental car companies:

If you are taking your pets in the car with you, these tips are sure to be helpful. Be sure they have proper ID, their shots are up to date, and don't forget their special needs when packing travel supplies. Most importantly, leaving your pet in a parked car can be a deadly mistake -- especially in our Florida heat.

Knowing the rules of the road and following them is another detail of safe summer driving. Know the roads you will be traveling and the laws governing the State. Drive the speed limit, refrain from making unsafe lane changes and tailgating other motor vehicles, remember to use turn signals and headlights when required. Stay away from aggressive or erratic drivers -- don't get personally involved or challenge them.

Driving in Florida during the summer offers some unique challenges. The intense heat and our regular summer rain storms are road hazards that cause many breakdowns and accidents. AAA Auto Club South offers advice and tips to help motorists and their automobiles avoid trouble.

Taking the time to handle these details will help get your summer vacation to Florida off to a good start. Remember to relax, keep your cool, and take it easy -- that's what vacations are for.

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