Fortunately, the Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada has some great gift ideas to help keep all the drivers on your list safe this holiday season.
Gift Idea #1: Winter Tires
Winter tires are a must in cold climates, yet many Canadians opt to stick with all-season tires to cut down on cost. The trouble is that all-season tires start to lose their elasticity and harden at around 7°C, greatly reducing grip on the road, whether it is snow covered or not. Help keep your loved ones safe on the road by gifting them with winter tires, which maintain their optimal elasticity until -40°C and allow for prompt braking.
And don’t underestimate the importance of new tires! Tread depth and wear are important factors in the proper functioning of your tires, so a new set is a great gift idea for all of your loved ones, even those living in Quebec where winter tires are mandatory.
Gift Idea #2: USB Car Charger
A USB car charger is a practical gift, particularly for drivers who take long roadtrips. With the right cord, the charger can bring any cell phone back to life and make all the difference in the event of an emergency. The charger can also be used to refresh the batteries in an iPod or GPS, allowing your loved ones to enjoy the open road.
Gift Idea #3: Jumper Cables
In case of battery failure, it’s a good idea to always have a pair of jumper cables in your car.
Ensure that the drivers on your list won’t be stranded this winter by buying them cables that are at least 12 feet long. A 6-gauge rating is fine for most cars.
Gift Idea #4: GPS
A Global Positioning System (GPS) with audio prompts can greatly enhance road safety by preparing you for turns and lane changes, allowing you to focus on other vehicles on the road rather than road signs. It can also help you navigate in poor weather conditions when visibility is reduced. If you know a driver that often hits the road in unfamiliar territory, a GPS may be the perfect gift!
Gift Idea #5: Windshield Wipers
A new set of windshield wipers may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re thinking of Christmas gifts, but many Canadians neglect to change theirs, costing them their visibility on the road. Help to keep the drivers on your list safe by buying them a new pair of wipers and some extra windshield washer fluid so that they can see where they’re going.
Gift Idea #6: Emergency Kit
A small box of emergency items can provide peace of mind and be a real lifesaver in case of an emergency. The emergency kit should contain first aid items along with a flashlight with spare batteries, snacks, a paper map, flares, and winter essentials like a snow brush/scraper, a blanket, and a shovel. An emergency kit will prepare your loved ones for unexpected incidents such as a breakdown that may leave them stranded on the roadside for an extended period of time.
Gift Idea #7: Roadside Assistance Membership
Various automobile associations, retailers, and repair groups offer roadside assistance programs with towing services. By purchasing a year’s membership for the drivers on your list, you can give the gift of peace of mind and help when it’s needed most.
For more helpful road safety tips, visit www.BeCarCareAware.ca, and learn how to keep yourself and your loved ones safe this holiday season.