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Want to know a sure-fire way to make steam come out of my ears? Send me out on the road in a foreign (or even familiar) town in a car rental, with bad driving directions and heavy traffic! Although it seems like a common situation to find yourself in, this trip I've been quite smart about my driving circumstances and avoided common stressors that have really had my panties in a twist in the past. As a result I've had more fun out on the road in my car rental than ever before and that's even with the added stress/complications of a baby!
My number one rule for avoiding angina while out in the car hire is to add 20 minutes to each travel. Driving 5 minutes away? Walk out the door 25 minutes before you have to be there. Why? You won't be stressed out if you're early, but you will be if you're sitting in traffic, you get pulled over on the motorway for trying to "make up time," or if the actions of others (such as my daughter) aren't quite as speedy as you'd hoped.
Go ahead and add GPS to your car rental. Don't feel silly adding it even when you're visiting your home town. If your next destination is not anywhere you have been driving recently, it can't hurt and it's always nice to have those play-by-play instructions guiding you so you don't miss a turn. You'll thank me when you're trying to find the new restaurant or hot spot in town.
Especially if you have GPS, there's no reason to have your portfolio, phone, or any other distractions sitting in the driver's seat. Make a habit of dropping it all off in the boot before you get in the driver's seat, which is the only way to keep it covered by the car rental insurance policy anyway. "Just a quick glance at my phone at this stop light"... not if you're trying to keep a cool head. I rationally believe, being that I am not a medical professional or emergency response worker, there is nothing so urgent it can't wait until I've parked my vehicle. Although traffic in the car rental can be boring It's still worth your full attention.