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How does the holiday season affect your driving?

A few things to note before switching off
Maria-Eleni Mageira
Digital Marketing & Communications Manager

It is already August and many of us are getting ready for the summer holidays. This results in traffic on the roads and, as a result, a possible increase in car accidents and fatalities. Analysis has shown that summer and early autumn are the most dangerous times of the year in this respect. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), in 2020, April had the fewest fatalities and August had the most. Furthermore, nearly half of the crashes that resulted in fatalities occurred on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday.

The dangers of travelling during the holidays

There are certain dangers, associated with the holiday season, that can be a threat to everyone's safety.

  • Increased levels of traffic, leading to roads being less safe
  • Increased stress levels, due to having multiple things to do in very little time
  • Increased levels of speeding
  • Distracted driving
  • Driving while tired and stressed
  • Drink driving

How to stay safe on the road during summer

The risk of getting into an accident is significantly higher on holidays than on regular days. On the bright side, there are things travellers can do in order to be prepared and enjoy their well-deserved holidays to the full, while also protecting themselves and their loved ones.

Check your car

Before a long trip, make sure that your vehicle is ready to travel. Check the tyres, oil and fuel levels and carry out any maintenance it might need. If you're travelling with children, ensure their car seats are fitted properly and that the seat belts fit well.

Plan for all conditions

This refers mainly to the weather. Even though it is summertime, it is not unlikely that you could encounter rain, thunderstorms or an extreme heatwave while travelling. Make sure to check the weather forecasts, regulate the temperature inside your vehicle and take plenty of food and drink to keep your energy levels high!

Minimise distractions

There are several distractions that affect safe driving (as summarised in the following graphic). Focus on your driving. Avoid multitasking and other bad habits, such as eating while driving. It is of paramount importance that you always keep your eyes on the road.  

Infographic of the most common distractions

Drive green, drive safely

Being in a rush increases the risk of getting involved in an accident, meaning that you may not actually reach your destination any faster. Enjoy your driving experience at a lower speed and keep a safe distance from other drivers. Driving carefully will save you money through lower fuel consumption in these times of high fuel prices, while also generating fewer CO2 emissions. Recent studies confirm that a circumspect driver can save up to 40% fuel compared to a more impulsive driver.

Have a plan B

Having a drink on the beach at sunset is a classic but it is important to have a plan B. Arrange for alternative transportation or nominate a designated driver, so you can have fun without taking risks.

Ask your insurer about UBI

If you want to be the best driver on the road and also be rewarded for your safe driving, usage-based insurance (UBI) might be a good fit for you. It is the type of motor insurance that best rewards your good driving skills. Some auto insurance companies offer this as an option. It looks at how you drive and could translate to a cheaper premium, depending on your driving score. More and more drivers are choosing a UBI product for their car insurance.

How does UBI work?

UBI programs collect telematics data to monitor your driving behaviour and assess risk more accurately. They look at speeding, sharp maneuvers and distractions due to phone usage, among other things. Different insurance companies might use different ways to gather the necessary data. This can be via a smartphone app, through systems embedded in the vehicle, devices plugged into the car, hardware etc.

Check out our pages to see how our award-winning telematics solution Coloride assesses driving behaviour and translates it into risk metrics. Driving safely and carefully will only add to your wonderful experience. Enjoy your holidays!

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