Easter Holidays: Road safety, budgeting and other tips
22/03/2018 Marked by easter egg and chocolate bunny advertisements on almost every corner in shopping malls and with thousands of church conferences expected to be held throughout the long weekend, the Easter holidays come as a time of relief from school and work for many South Africans.
With thousands of families travelling to annual central denominational gatherings and conferences, mini-vacations and concerts across the country, the death toll on roads during Easter is always a cause for concern.
Travelling as a family is always fun, however, this can also pose a risk. Motorists, especially those travelling alone with young children, are much more susceptible to being distracted and possibly causing accidents. It helps to travel with another adult who will watch the children.
The ancient seatbelt fastening practice remains king of car safety. Regardless of whether it is a 30-minute or overnight drive, always make sure all occupants of the car you are in are wearing seatbelts. Also remember to keep the little ones away from the front seat to avoid a case of airbag suffocation.
Spend on a budget
For most people, Easter falls comfortably into pay-day hype, which temptingly translates into one thing - bad spending decisions! Whether you are spending it with family at home or church or going out with a few friends, always set a budget for the festivities and try your best to keep at it. If you and a friend can drive in one car, do so, it will save both of you some money. Your salary must still get you through the rest of the month so spend wisely!
Beware of crime
We are faced with car, handbag and money predators in stores every day, but these unscrupulous individuals are especially hyperactive during these times, wandering around malls looking for their next victim. Car theft in unsecured mall parking is cause for concern. Remember, thieves know how to blend in with people so be vigilant when entering and leaving your car or loading goods.
Child abduction is not a new concept. It is especially widespread in shopping malls and other crowded areas. If you will be out and about with little children, be careful not to let them walk off alone or out of sight.
It is unfortunate that motorists have to be warned against picking up hitchhikers, especially considering why Easter is celebrated. Not everyone standing by the road asking for a ride is actually just looking for a ride, others want your car and belongings. It is as they say – no good deed goes unpunished!
Take advantage of the long weekend
If you won’t be doing anything else, use the break to get some work done and if you are a freelancer or entrepreneur on the side, you could earn some money while you’re at it! The whole idea is to do something that is constructive to you – getting some rest is a also a good thing if your normal week consists of back to back all-nighters, unhealthy sleeping patterns or five cups of coffee daily to keep you going.