Journey by car is comfort and freedom on the one hand and a huge responsibility on the other. Yes, there is no one here to stop in a beautiful place longer, to change the route during the trip, to see as much as possible interesting, fully immersed in the country and imbued with the atmosphere of new places.
But the comfort lies in the details, so it is important to think through all the details of the trip. We tell you what is vitally important for the journey by car, and what can be neglected.
The process of preparation for a trip by car depends on the distance of the trip and the condition of the car. For starters, take care of the documents.
Obligatory documents for traveling abroad
Bring your driver’s license, car registration certificate, technical examination certificate, medical certificate of driver’s health, insurance certificate.
If the car does not belong to you, you must have a notarized power of attorney.
When leaving Belarus, do not forget about the insurance for vehicle owners. It’s about the so-called “Green Card. It must be issued by a Belarusian insurance organization and is valid in the countries where you will be staying. Usually such insurance costs about $35 for 15 days outside Belarus. If you haven’t managed to do it the day before, it’s not a problem – you can draw up a “Green Card” at the entrance to the border.
All participants of the trip should have a passport, personal insurance and, if necessary, a visa. The consular fee to the EU countries is still 60 euros.
The additional costs depend on how you open your visa. Visa centers will charge about 20 Euros for the service, and travel agencies will charge more. As for the insurance, its price depends on the number of days of travel, the amount of insurance compensation and some other factors and can vary from 2-3 to several tens of euros.
And a PayOkay card gives you free personal insurance, and foreign currency conversion payments at the rate will cost you more than buying currency for cash. Make sure that the insurance will be valid for the entire duration of your trip. Taking into account the fact that a trip by car sometimes implies a “free schedule”, you can put a few days’ worth of spare money into the insurance.
If you have hotel reservations, you should prepare the booking confirmation in advance. Border guards may be interested in the location and purpose of the trip. It is better to be ready, without delaying neither yourself, nor the queue at the border.
How to prepare a car?
The most important thing in such a journey is not to let the car down. Recently we published a text on how to prepare the car for the summer. If the car has already been trained in accordance with our instructions, it will not require much expense.
Be sure to put a spare full-size wheel, jack, empty canister and a 5-liter bottle of clean water with you. Instead of a windscreen wiper, you can take a small bottle of summer concentrate, which will help to cope with insect marks on the glass and will not take up much space.
Of course, the car must have a fire extinguisher with an unexpired expiration date, a complete first aid kit and an emergency stop sign. This set can be demanded even by the Belarusian traffic policeman.
Put a rag with you, or better yet two. One can wipe the headlights and side mirrors, while the other can wipe the glass from the inside. Besides, it is necessary to have the minimum set of tools (usually it lies together with reserve), a towing cable and a compressor.
Check the air conditioner: after all, summer, heat. And do not forget that if the air conditioner works, all windows in the car should be closed. But if it works simply by blowing, it is possible to open a window. There is no need to set the air conditioner at least degrees, and then turn it off. Choose a comfortable temperature and keep it constant. You need to be healthy when travelling, and because of incorrect use of the air conditioner it is easy to get sick.
Don’t forget to fill a full tank before you go abroad. In Belarus, fuel is cheaper than in neighboring countries. In addition, the prices at all our gas stations are the same, but abroad they can be very different depending on the filling station brand. Do not rush to refuel at the nearest gas station, compare prices and choose the most acceptable one.
Fuel is the most expensive in Scandinavia, Greece and Portugal. In the Balkans, the Baltic States, and Poland, it is cheaper. In any case, analyze the prices and do not forget to refuel before your trip to the “expensive” countries. The MTBank car card provides 3% cacheback at gas stations around the world.
In addition, its owner can take advantage of all the privileges of discount programs and loyalty cards of the gas station. As a result, the amount of fuel savings can reach 4-6% and even more, depending on the conditions of discounts in each specific petrol station network.
Also, cardholders have access to a bonus in the form of a package of services “Guaranteed Autohelp”. If you are stuck on the road, you will come to recharge or evacuate, and if you get into an accident, you will be consulted on further actions for free. The service is available not only in Belarus, but also in European countries. You should agree that this is an irreplaceable service in a road trip.
Travel by car does not mean that you can take everything with you. Every 50 kg on board increases fuel consumption by 2%. Bring only what you need.