While traveling to a new area is always a little nerve wracking, having to drive yourself around in an unfamiliar area can sometimes be downright dangerous. Especially if you’re driving in an area where the road conditions and traffic are just naturally bad, like in California, you might be nervous about just getting behind the wheel let alone figuring out how to get to where you need to be.
Luckily, there are a few things you can try and do that can make this whole experience a little easier to manage. To show you how this can be done, here are three tips for navigating the freeway systems of California.
Save Time And Beat Traffic By Taking Toll Roads
California freeways are almost always full of cars either cruising along at fast speeds or crawling due to traffic jams or car accidents. Because of this, it can often take quite a long time to get to wherever you need to be, adding potentially hours to your drive time.
One way you can help mitigate the traffic and time spent on the road is to use toll roads wherever they’re available. According to Joanne Thomas, a contributor to USA Today, almost all of the toll roads on California freeways have scanners that will see when your vehicle enters and exits the toll road and then mail you a bill which you can pay online. This can make things much easier than sitting in traffic or having to add an hour to your drive.
Be Aware Of Motorcycles
If you weren’t on edge enough with all the stop-and-go traffic on the freeways and the vehicles weaving in and out of lanes they assume are moving quicker, you should also be on the lookout for motorcycles coming dangerously close to your car.
According to Kayte Deioma, a contributor to Trip Savvy, lane splitting is legal for motorcycles in California. What this means is that motorcycles can drive on the white dotted lines that separate lanes on the freeway. While this allows them to move more freely in traffic, it can make things a little trickier if you’re trying to change lanes around a motorcycle, so make sure you keep an eye out for this.
Stay Up-To-Date On Traffic Changes
As was mentioned above, traffic and congestion can change at a moment’s notice on California freeways. Whether there’s been a car accident ahead of you or there’s road construction going on, there’s always a chance that you’re going to run into some kind of slow down on your route.
To best stay apprised of this, Thrillist.com, recommends that you stay up-to-date with traffic changes by listening for SigAlerts, listening to traffic updates on local radio stations, or using your GPS to find the fastest route to your destination.
If you’re nervous about driving on the California freeways as part of your next trip, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you maneuver your way around like a local.