For many people, summertime is vacation time. If you’re wary of flying during the pandemic, a road trip may sound ideal, but you still need to pay attention to health and safety issues. Here are 10 tips for a safe summer road trip.

1. Get your car ready.

You should ALWAYS pack emergency supplies before going on a road trip (or anywhere, really). But because of the pandemic, it’s especially important to be prepared.

You should also get your car checked out before hitting the road. That way, you’re less likely to have a flat tire, dead battery or other mishap during your travels.

Check out Ready.gov for information on how to prepare your car and what to include in your emergency kit.

2. Call ahead.

Some people like to go wherever the road takes them, but this might not be the best time for spontaneous vacations. Figure out which restaurants, hotels and attractions you want to see, and find out if they’re open.

3. Check local and state regulations.

States, counties and cities have been establishing their own orders to deal with the pandemic. As you travel, you’ll probably encounter a wide range of regulations. For example, beaches may be closed, or masks may be required. Some states may require outsiders to be sequestered for 14 day upon entering the state. Find out what you can and can’t do so you don’t run into any trouble.

4. Keep an eye out for updates.

As virus cases surge in some locations, new restrictions may be implemented, and re-openings may be rolled back. Watch the news for important updates and safety information.

5. Beware of germs at the gas station.

At some point, you’re going to have to fill up the gas tank. When you do, watch out for germs. Like other frequently touched surfaces, the gas pump can host a ton of germs. Read this Consumer Reports article for information on how to protect yourself.

6. Find a good spot for your masks.

More and more places are requiring people to wear a mask, so you’ll want to have a face covering handy. When you’re not wearing your mask, you might think letting it hang from your rearview mirror is convenient – but you may need to reconsider this.

In many states, hanging items from the review mirror is illegal. Unless you want to risk an expensive ticket, you’d better find a different spot for your mask.

7. Stay away from crowds.

The CDC recommends maintaining a distance of six feet from other people. Try to plan activities that make social distancing easy and fun. Hiking, for example, can be a good activity.

8. Practice good hygiene.

Don’t let your road trip turn into a germ fest. If you have to sneeze or cough, cover your mouth. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If you can’t wash your hands – a likely issue on the road – use a hand sanitizer that’s at least 60 percent alcohol.

9. Keep your car virus-free.

You can track a lot of germs into your car, so you’ll want to disinfect the steering wheel and other surfaces. Consumer Reports has tips for killing coronavirus in your vehicle without damaging your car.

10. Focus on your overall health and safety.

People are paying a lot of attention to coronavirus right now, and for good reason, but you shouldn’t forget about other health and safety issues. Having to seek emergency medical care is always a fast way to ruin a road trip, and it may be even worse if hospitals are crowded with coronavirus patients.

Drive safely to avoid crashes, stay hydrated, and avoid unnecessary risks. And even though no one wants to have to call off a vacation, if you’re feeling sick, you should stay home.

As always, Jupiter Auto is here to keep you safe on the road. Have you reviewed your auto insurance lately? Get a free  and instant car insurance quote here.