Summer In The City: Keeping Your Cool Behind The Wheel
With summer approaching, it’s getting easier for city dwellers to overheat. On a scorching hot day, there’s nothing like wall to wall traffic jams, melting tarmac and stuffy, un-air-conditioned offices to bring out the worst in our natures and cause us undue stress. Cities around the globe are famous for their heavy traffic, congested streets and frustrated drivers. Anxiety, stress and aggression seem to be the natural consequence of being crowded into the urban jungle during the summer season. This means that accidents become far more likely as people lose their cool and make frustrated mistakes which could have been avoided. With the added impact of congestion charging in low emission zones, you often have to take a strange and longer route, so getting lost and taking more time to get to a destination is also a factor.
However, there are ways that you can take the stress out of driving and make your journey calmer and less expensive, and have more chance of keeping your cool during summer in the city.
Get The Ride Right
It could be that you’re still driving a car which no longer suits your needs, which can make your journeys costlier and less comfortable. It might be that a growing family means you’re squeezed into a vehicle that you’ve outgrown, or if you have an SUV with a large engine but you drive in the congestion zone a lot then perhaps you need to consider a hybrid or full electric vehicle instead. Making sure your vehicle is still serving your needs is key. Shop around to get the best value deals – you don’t have to go for brand new, deals on used vehicles through a supplier like Hilton Car Supermarket can often get you better value, whatever your budget.
Plan Out Your Routes
If you haven’t driven in the city for a while or you’re planning a summer road trip which involves some city driving, then make sure you have the best route planned out in advance, rather than just relying on your Sat Nav to guide you. Look up your route on Google Maps well in advance and work out any likely delays – it’s also worth taking note of any events like charity runs, pride celebrations or other events which may mean road closures.
Work Around Peak Times
If it’s possible for you to avoid peak traffic times, it’s a good idea to do so. It may mean rescheduling a few meetings to different times or using flexible working to start early and finish late. It’s amazing quite how much difference even fifteen minutes can make in terms of peak traffic flow , and you could claim back a lot of time and have to sit in far less traffic jams, leading to lowered stress levels.
Use Your Time Well
You won’t be able to avoid every single delay, but you can turn a few of them to your advantage! One of the most frustrating things about being stuck in traffic is the feeling that you’re wasting time, especially when you have a million things to be getting on with – but it doesn’t have to be that way. You can use the time a little better. Learn a language with a download. Dictate a few emails via Siri. Listen to the best podcasts and expand your horizons, or kick back with an audio book.