Almost half of all family road trip arguments stem from getting lost, Hertz poll* suggests
The secret to avoiding arguments in the car this Christmas is as simple as plugging in a reliable satnav, research by The Hertz Corporation (NYSE:HTZ) in the UK found. According to Hertz’s poll, the most common cause of in-car rows is getting lost and bickering over directions.
With millions of motorists predicted to hit the roads from December 19, the risk of family flare-ups is greater than ever.
More than four in 10 drivers (44%) named navigation as the most likely cause of a dispute during a family car journey, while nearly half (48%) said a satnav was the most important item to pack.
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Parents should also remember to take some gadgets to occupy their children, as the survey found noisy and naughty youngsters are the second biggest reason for disagreements –voted for by 40% of motorists. Almost a third (29%) identified games and entertainment as the top items to take on a family trip.
The satnav may also come in handy for finding alternative routes, as, according to the survey’s findings, the third most common cause of arguments is getting stuck in traffic.
“With so many people on the roads, the holidays can be a stressful time for families to spend in the car, said Michel Taride, Group President, Hertz International. “Last year brought storms and floods that left people stranded in their vehicles and delayed journeys.”
“Our research shows that a little planning and a few essential items can make the difference between a smooth getaway and a nightmare trip,” Taride continued.
For those hiring vehicles for their Christmas getaway, the Hertz NeverLost® satellite navigation system takes the strain out of mapping the best route. The technology is available on rentals across Europe and features an easy-to-use touch-screen, voice control, Bluetooth for hands-free calls and advanced 3D lane guidance to make junctions simpler to negotiate.
Hertz customers can also travel without the worry of searching for an internet connection or paying exorbitant roaming charges by adding a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot to their rentals. The portable device lets customers easily link tablets, laptops, smartphones and games consoles to the web while on the move.
As families prepare to drive to visit relatives and take holidays this season, Hertz has compiled a list of winter travel essentials to ensure safe and stress-free journeys.
Hertz’s Christmas getaway driving checklist
Top 5 causes of car arguments:
- Getting lost / directions
- Noisy / naughty children
- Partner’s driving skills
- Lavatory stops
Before you drive off:
- Screen wash – you will use more when it is cold and if there is salt on the roads, so make sure you have plenty before you set off. Don’t dilute it too much to avoid freezing.
- Fuel – keep your tank at least a quarter full in case you get stuck in a traffic jam.
- Battery – get your battery checked and replaced, if necessary, as older ones will run down quickly in the cold and may leave you stranded.
- Tyres – make sure you have plenty of tread – 2mm minimum – and avoid reducing tyre pressures to get more grip as it is ineffective and makes the car harder to control. Consider snow chains or winter tyres if travelling to snowy regions.
- Time – avoid the dangers of rushing by allowing plenty of time for your journey, including regular breaks to stay alert.
Top 5 essentials for the trip:
- Ice scraper and de-icer to clear your windscreen
- Snow shovel, strips of old carpet or pieces of cardboard, as well as salt or sand to regain traction in ice and snow
- Blankets, rugs or sleeping bags for long traffic jams
- Battery jump leads – flat batteries are the most common causes of winter breakdowns
- Torch and batteries
Top 5 in-car essentials:
- Satnav and charger or printed route and map to avoid getting lost and arguments
- Entertainment for children to avoid rows and keep passengers occupied
- Fully-charged mobile phone and charger
- Drinks and snacks in case of delays in cold weather
- Warm clothes, coat, scarf, hat and gloves in case of breakdown or long delays
*1,009 UK respondents in total; 504 of them answered the family-related questions.