Easter weekend – the public holiday bonanza that’s a great break but that can also be stressful. Here are some tips to make the best of it.
Published: Thursday, April 13th 2017
Easter weekend - the public holiday bonanza and period that sees South Africans flocking to vacation destinations around the country.But, while it is supposed to be the perfect time for a break, it is also a source of stress for many holidaymakers who have to contend with all the other travellers.CompareGuru has some tips for making the best out of your Easter holiday:
1. Try Alternative Routes And Attractions
According to the Automobile Association, all the major routes will be seeing an increase on traffic. With the organisation specifically highlighting N1 to Moria in Limpopo, the N3 to KwaZulu-Natal, and the N1 and N2 to Cape Town as the busiest routes.With this traffic comes queues at tolling plazas and petrol stations.If you would like to avoid this stress, try take some alternative routes where possible. If a petrol station along the highway looks like it has too many cars waiting in line, try stop in a small town to fill up instead.Where possible, maybe take a more scenic route rather than the one everyone else is on. It could save you time, but it will almost definitely save you stress.When it comes to tourist spots, consider maybe seeing some of the hidden gems at your destination. If you know you would rather not queue for two hours, consider instead some attractions that are less popular but also great to visit.
2. Tips For Comfortable Travel
If you're driving: Most South Africans opt to travel to their holiday destination for the Easter weekend via car. If you are doing this, take turns driving so that you are alert enough on the road. This will also give you some valuable non-driving time where you can rest and not be overcome by the frustration you feel behind the wheel.
If you're flying: There is no way you're going to find an empty flight over this busy period, but you can take some precautions to try make your journey as comfortable as possible. Bring some gadgets and entertainment to keep you occupied and comfortable on the plane. Also, noise cancelling headphones and neck pillows can be lifesavers.
3. Better Early Than Late
This applies to driving, flying and visiting tourist spots. Rather opt to be an early bird when it comes to setting off on your journey. You will avoid peak-time traffic and queues, and the stress that comes from being in a rush.When it comes to tourist 'traps' over this weekend, you can be guaranteed that places will be exceptionally crowded by late morning.Try to arrive as soon as the place opens to avoid some of the crowds.
Once you reach your destination, you're likely to want to make the most of your stay by indulging in the sights and attractions. If you're in a popular tourist hub, like Cape Town, you might want to consider buying a pass to multiple attractions to save money.SANParks has its popular Wild Card, which gives you a year's unlimited access to South Africa's national parks for a set fee.For example, a family visit (two adults, two children) to Cape Point would cost around R410 for a single visit.But, a Wild Card for the SANParks Cluster is R975 for a family pass (two adults, up to five children), and it's valid for a year and applies to multiple destinations around the country.There are also a few private companies who have partnerships with local attractions. So, make sure to do your research on potential passes you could invest in.
5. Do a Safety Check On Your Vehicle
While Easter weekend is a period of fun and relaxation for many, it also comes with the notorious reputation of being the most dangerous period on South Africa's roads.Before setting off, you'll want to do a full safety check of your vehicle and make sure that it's roadworthy. Pump up those tires, check that everything is working fine, and make sure your emergency kit is fully stocked.