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How to pack and prepare your car for the parade

By  AAMI

We’re getting roadtrip ready to hit the sparkling streets of Sydney! To help you get ready, here are some safety tips to make you parade prep pros.

As with any long drive, proper prep is priority one for staying safe on the road. So, get your rainbow outfits ready and start ticking off your checklist!

Clear windows and secure your stuff

Make sure you can see

Your road trip calls for a mountain of travel must-haves: luggage, travel pillows, maybe a feather boa or two. As it builds in the back of your car, it’s easy for the pile to obscure your rear window — and this, kings and queens, is dangerous. All windows need to be clear, so the driver’s vision isn’t compromised. This way your fans get to see you too!

Secure the goodies

If you’re doing any rooftop loading, make sure it’s tied down securely. You may want to invest in a cargo pod, and have it installed correctly if you’re carrying large items (think giant bedazzled hats or sparkly hoop skirts). These luggage pods are a great way to extend the storage capacity of your car. Just be sure to read your car’s manual first. And remember, carrying items on your car’s roof will increase its height, so be cautious when entering tunnels, garages and car parks.

If your boot is open to the rest of the car, as with many 4WDs and hatchbacks, store your treasures in containers and strap everything in place. You don’t want loose items flying through the car if you stop suddenly. Most newer vehicles have a luggage cover or tie-down points for this reason — use ‘em! The only thing you want flying is your rainbow flag at the parade!

Don’t drive in heels

Heels for the stage? Yes. Heels for driving? No! We know it’s tempting to use everyday life as a runway, but your car isn’t the place! Your heels are fabulous, but they might get stuck under the pedals. They also distort your ability to measure how much pressure you’re applying on the brakes. So, pack those heels away (you’ll only be parting with them for a few hours) and slip on some sensible flat shoes!

And speaking of heels, AAMI is a proud sponsor of the Broken Heel festival float in 2020. Give us a wave on the sparkling streets of Sydney at the Feb 29th parade. Feel free to snap a selfie or two! Heels are most welcome.

Pack road trip essentials

Your road trip essentials kit should include water, snacks and a first aid kit. You want to make sure you’re fed, fuelled and healthy if your car breaks down. Don’t forget your portable phone charger! It’ll come in handy if you need to contact AAMI Roadside Assist from Woop Woop. We can provide 24/7 Australia-wide roadside assistance if your car breaks down or you’re locked out for any reason. Just add AAMI Roadside Assist as an optional extra on your AAMI Comprehensive Car Insurance policy. Signing up online will get you $50 off — our treat.

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You should also pack LED flares, or a good old-fashioned torch, in case your car breaks down in the dark. A portable coffee machine may not be a must-have, but you won’t be sorry you brought it. Once the essentials are packed, throw in some glittery masks and all the other fun stuff. Optional: sprinkle sequins over the lot for a festive feel!

Organise your things

Don’t just dump everything in the boot the morning of the drive! Organising your road trip essentials requires a little bit of consideration. Luckily for you, we’re here to break it down: large items like strollers or heavy bags should go in the boot first, then add lighter stuff around them. The weight should be evenly distributed, so your car won’t topple when turning corners. Avoid overloading so you can maneuver your car safely.

Do a basic car check

The lead up to any glittering event often calls for manicures and new hairdos. But before you hit the road, your car needs some TLC too! Confirm that your engine has enough fuel, oil and radiator coolant. If you’re adding heavy luggage, match your tyre pressure to the extra weight. Don’t hesitate to ask your local service station for help!

And remember, you can’t predict everything you’ll encounter on the road, no matter how prepped you are. Pack some peace of mind by adding AAMI Comprehensive Car Insurance to your pre-event to-do-list. We’ll cover damage to your car as well as to other people’s vehicles and property, on your way to the parade and on the road beyond. Weeee’re off to the parade, we’re off to the paradddde!

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This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.