Plan a happy Heritage Day getaway for the family

holiday-house“Road trips provide vital bonding time for a family, but it is important to choose the right car for your chosen destination to enjoy it to the fullest,” says Francois Labuschagne, product and marketing manager at Auto Mart.

If your lifestyle is filled with a fair amount of adventure and adrenaline, then a 4×4 is an ideal choice because your 1.4 litre car will not have much power for off-road stunts. If you do not own a sport utility vehicle (SUV) or 4×4, consider buying a pre-owned vehicle.

“Online classifieds offer a wide selection of second-hand cars and because the sites can be accessed from your cellphone, tablet or desktop you can conduct research from anywhere,” he says.

For the less adventurous driver, a 1.4 or 1.6 litre sedan is the perfect vehicle, if your journey is long distance and occurs on tarred roads. Ensure you have the following features or specifications before hitting the road:

  • The boot is big enough for luggage, food and beverages
  • The car’s air-conditioning is working and has been serviced recently
  • Your car has a USB and auxiliary port for music and to charge devices
  • Your car is fuelled efficiently

“When investing in a car and specifically a family car, make sure the boot is big enough to accommodate all that it needs to. Of course a pre-owned car fitted with a towbar to add a trailer is a bonus and you can also find a selection of trailers for sale online,” says Labuschagne.

It is imperative to always have your vehicle checked before you embark on a journey. The brakes, tyres, wipers and windscreen should be in good working order for a safe trip. Save the contact details of your insurance and roadside assistance service on your phone and remember to pack a first aid kit.

Still unsure of where to go over Heritage Day weekend or even December for that matter? “Online classifieds, such as Junk Mail, have a plethora of holiday destinations to choose from to suit your style of vacation and budget and you can liaise directly with the owner or agent to make a booking,” he says.

There are beautiful family friendly locations in different provinces to select from for your getaway and breathtaking and exotic destinations to visit with friends.

Searching online is convenient and holiday accommodation seekers can scan hundreds of adverts with price details, information about the unit and pictures to find the spot that fits their family’s needs and pocket.

If you want a home away from home, there are fully furnished family homes and guest houses to choose from. Some offer entertainment to keep the family occupied for the entire weekend such as a pool, tennis court, pool and soccer tables and swing ball just to name a few.

What would Heritage Day be without a braai? A self-catering option usually comes with a built-in or free-standing braai for you to enjoy this South African tradition.

A deposit is required to secure the holiday unit, but remember that even though information about the unit can be found online it doesn’t mean that the unit exists or is available during the period advertised. “Only make use of reputable sites, do your research and make sure that the advertiser is who they say they are before you commit to paying a deposit,” says Labuschagne.

Heritage Day celebrates the diversity and shared cultures South Africa has to offer. Whatever vehicle and holiday destination you choose to suit your family’s unique tastes and wants, make sure you conduct thorough research to ensure that the car delivers a pleasant road trip and good service afterwards, and that the accommodation fulfills your family’s needs.

Article originally published on, 21 Sept 2016.

Plan a happy Heritage Day getaway for the family
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Plan a happy Heritage Day getaway for the family
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Junk Mail
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