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Top 5 winter road trip travel tips

Plan ahead to ensure a fun, worry-free road trip experience.

By Yuki Hayashi Wheels.ca

Dec 11, 2014 2 min. read

Article was updated 9 years ago

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Plan ahead to ensure a fun, worry-free road trip experience

From holiday get-togethers to fun on the slopes, the winter road trip is a Canadian tradition. Winter weather and driving conditions pose additional challenges, so plan ahead for safety and comfort. Here are our top 5 winter road trip travel tips.

1. Book that winter tune-up

Icy, slushy driving conditions put tires and brake systems to the test. Frigid temperatures challenge your car?s engine and batteries. Snow and freezing rain make your windshield, defroster and wipers work extra hard. Prep your car with a pre-season tune-up, oil change, and cooling system flush so it?s ready for the worst of the season. Get those winter tires installed, too!

Car Tune Up

2. Get a CAA membership

Whether your car breaks down on the highway or you need a jump-start in a hotel parking lot, CAA?s 24-7 roadside assistance offers peace of mind for any short- or long-haul journey. Bonus: you?re covered in the US too.

Road Side Assistance

3. Pack an emergency kit

If you get stranded during a weather emergency, it could take hours for help to arrive. So dress warmly, and keep a winter emergency preparedness kit in your car. The kit should include non-perishable food, plus bottled water and a small shovel. Keep warm with blankets and a candle; set inside a large can for safety, a candle can help warm your car until help arrives.?

Emergency Prepardness Kit

4. Back up your map

The night before Christmas rest stop is not the time to discover a road closure. If you use old-school road maps, upgrade to a GPS system or smartphone. And if you use your iPhone for everything, back that up with an old fashioned road map. Think: fail-safe.

GPS System

5. Scope out your rest stops beforehand

Conduct pre-trip research in search of attractions that will make longer journeys more interesting. Eat lunch in a 1950?s style diner, browse a chocolatier, or pose next to a giant pencil, muskie or car-sized mosquito. After all: road trip Instagrams are a year-round pursuit!

U Drop Inn

Did we miss any? Do you have some additional tips to keep in mind to stay safe this winter on the road? Tell us in the comments below.?

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