Taking a long road trip is always one of the best stress relievers of all. The wind in your hair, the open roads that stretch to endlessness, and reaching a new, unknown destination add to the thrill of it.
But this beautiful road trip can turn into a nightmare if you’re not property-ready for it.
Carrying the right luggage, tools, water, etc is what every traveler does, and we are not talking about that.
We are talking about a risk that many people either forget about or ignore; the risk of facing issues with your car, or getting in a car accident.
When on a road trip, make sure that you have made the right changes to your auto insurance policies to avoid getting into bigger trouble when you do get in trouble.
This article will tell you everything important about what your auto insurance should cover while you take a road trip.
4 Road Trip Insurance Tips
Road Trip Tip 1: Increase Coverage Limit for Liability Insurance
Think about it. When you are on the freeway, you are driving at higher speeds. And so are every other driver.
Long road trips include both driving on the freeway and in remote areas with bad road conditions, sometimes meandering mountain and hill roads.
The accidents that happen in the cities while commuting will be much milder than the accidents on the freeway. This is why you should increase your liability insurance coverage limit before a road trip.
If you get in a car accident with another driver and the accident is your fault, you are liable to pay for it. This is done through your liability coverage, i.e., The other driver claims your liability coverage for the cost of the accident.
An accident on the freeway where cars are zooming at high speed will result in severe damages, and these severe damages and injuries will require more money for repairs and treatments.
So increasing your coverage limits safeguards from you paying anything from your pockets.
Road Trip Tip 2: Get Roadside Assistance
It would be foolish for someone to not get roadside assistance before going on a long road trip. Roadside assistance is made for people who take road trips regularly.
This is not a separate policy, but an add-on to your existing policy and it is very affordable.
Roadside assistance generally includes services such as battery jumpstart, tire changing, tank refueling, winching, towing your car to the nearest service station, key replacement, etc.
These are the general features. Some companies offer lodging options included with roadside assistance as well.
So if you are planning on taking a road trip, roadside assistance is a must. The chances of getting a flat tire, running out of gas, or just being stuck with a battery that won’t start are high.
And you do not want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere with a car that cannot start.
Road Trip Tip 3: Don’t Forget Collision Insurance
Collision coverage is an important auto insurance policy that covers the cost of car repairs needed after an accident. This policy can be claimed even if the accident was your fault.
Even if you drive into a tree or a wall, you can claim collision coverage.
When you are out on a road trip, you do not know what kind of roads you’ll encounter. The longer you drive, the higher the risk of getting in a car accident.
Plus, an accident on the freeway will cause serious damage to your car which will result in expensive mechanic costs.
So when you are about to go on a road trip, make sure to get a collision damage waiver if you don’t have it already. And if you do have it, increase the coverage limit so that your policy is capable of covering expensive repairs.
Collision coverage also covers damages due to poor road conditions. So if you are planning on an off-road trip, a collision damage waiver becomes necessary.
Collision coverage can be slightly expensive, so make sure you choose the most affordable options. Find more about it here.
Road Trip Tip 4: Uninsured Motorist Coverage
We’ve considered liability insurance to make sure the other driver gets reimbursed for an accident caused by you. We’ve also considered collision coverage. But what happens if someone else hits you and then drives away?
Since they have fled the scene, how can you claim their liability coverage? This is why you need to have an uninsured motorist coverage policy, not just during a road trip, but every time.
There are more than 32 million uninsured drivers in the US, and on the freeway, it is hard to find good Samaritans who are willing to stay there after hitting your car at 70 miles per hour.
Only your uninsured motorist coverage policy will come to the rescue.
Uninsured motorist coverage can be claimed when the driver at fault lacks liability coverage or has one but it cannot pay for the entire cost of the accident.
This policy can be claimed in a hit-and-run case, which is more likely in a long road trip.
Apart from uninsured motorist coverage, it is advised to also get a personal injury protection plan. This policy will cover medical treatment bills after a car accident. But what makes it even better is that it also pays for any lost wages.
If you are a resident of any of the 12 no-fault states, a personal injury protection plan is necessary to have.
But even if you do not live in one of these states, it is still advised that you get a personal injury protection plan so that you do not end up paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills post-accident.
A road trip can be extremely relaxing for you and your family. It can be a time to bond with your family as well as decompress. You can explore new places, try new foods, and learn about new cultures.
Driving to new destinations can offer more sight-seeing and bonding time than traditional airplane travel. However, when you’re road-tripping, it can often bring about a new set of things to worry about.
Driving safety is one key concern. Not just for your driving, but for others. You have to remain diligent while out on the roads, but it’s impossible to prevent everything.
It’s possible to get into a car accident while on a road trip. Unfamiliar weather, drivers, and roads can sometimes be dangerous. That’s why it’s important to always have good insurance, especially when you make long trips.
When you’re driving long distances, the chances of getting hit by another driver are definitely increased. There’s simply more that can go wrong. It’s not the easiest thing to think about, but it’s realistic.
That’s why having good insurance is key. Staying up to date on your policy is especially important, and knowing your state’s laws. If you need to update your policy at all, be sure to do that before your road trip begins!
That way, if anything does happen while out on the road, you can ensure that you’re covered. The last thing you want is to get stuck with a costly repair bill and have your insurance go up at the same time.
For more road trip ideas, check out our packing guide for road trips.