Highway Driving Tips | Freeway vs Highway

highway vs freeway, highway safety tips

When you no longer feel comfortable driving on the highways or freeways because your vehicle’s bearings whine, the suspension makes you feel like you are driving a boat, and you are prone to breakdowns at any given time, it is time to visit Cash for Cars. Cash for Cars has the network of salvage yards on call and a convenient online service that lets you find top dollar for your junked and aging vehicles. But, no matter what you drive on the highways and freeways, you can benefit from these safe highway driving tips.

What is the Difference Between a Highway and a Freeway?

While all freeways are essentially highways, not all highways are freeways. This is because freeways are meant to open up traffic and give you unfettered access to encompassing miles and miles of terrain without stopping. A freeway is usually entered and exited via sloped ramps with very few distractions along the route to tempt motorists to do anything but drive as far as the eye could see. A highway, by contrast, is generally full of temptations as commercial entities prop up their baits on the sides to lure in passers-by.

A freeway is divided with concrete barriers and landscaping to separate the sets of lanes that are both coming and going in opposite directions. A highway has no such barriers and may have a central lane for making turns to cross over into businesses on the other side if it goes through a residential area. Because highways don’t have the freedom of freeways, you will find more traffic signs and lights to impede traffic.

It is even thought that many freeways were developed to double as airport runways in the event of an emergency. The engineering is definitely built upon keeping them as straight in line as possible to reduce fuel consumption and accidents from driver error. Driving long distances in a straight line requires less concentration and motor skills. It is, therefore, easier to drive on a freeway without fatigue for longer periods of time.

Key Highway Driving Tips

1: Use Alternate Routes to Avoid Traffic Lights

When you are driving on a highway, it is the traffic lights that tend to slow you down. Traffic lights where two highways cross each other can lead to utter gridlock at rush hour traffic times. You may have to sit idle at these lights for 5 to 10 minutes because the traffic is backed up and congested for many other cross points behind it. The traffic will creep along in these instances and barely trickle free as motorists maneuver and look for any escape.

You should avoid highways that get jammed up every day at critical crossings by taking alternate routes that may seem longer on other days. There are almost always other highway routes that run parallel to the direction you are doing which can be accessed and traverse in less time even if you have to enter them from several blocks out of your way.

2: Scrupulously Obey the Speed Limits

Although it is common for drivers to go as much as 10 mph over the speed limit on larger freeways because everyone is speeding, it is not a good idea to try and make time on highways in more commercial areas. The police typically have speed traps set up to force drivers to slow down and stop when they are coming close to commercial areas from another town. You should also take more care with your turn signals because undercover police may be around in many areas looking for traffic infractions.

3: Be Careful with GPS Navigation Apps

Many drivers today use GPS navigation apps like Google Maps on their cellphones or other programs that provide them a clear and easy to follow visual map of directions. While these applications can be useful for locating hard-to-find places on the fly, it is easy to misjudge where exactly you are supposed to turn. This can be especially bad on one-way streets where the risk of a head-on collision is highest.

There are also situations when the GPS has it totally wrong or when they want you to make an illegal U-turn. Always ditch the GPS instructions and try to manually map things out if you feel any doubts about the quality of the directions. There are certain areas that are more poorly mapped out than others.

Using GPS can also put you in the bad habit of taking convoluted driving routes that are more frustrating to traverse or more time-consuming even if they are technically shorter in distance. Although a lot more can be said, these are just some general tips for driving on the highway.

An Additional Key Tip for Driving on the Highways at Night

Driving on the highways at night is a whole other ballgame. The chief problem is visibility. This is especially true in inclement weather when visibility is further compromised. Although motor vehicles are equipped with bright lights that make it easier to see turn signals and the contours of a vehicle when you are cruising along, some drivers may be suffering from fatigue.

When people are tired and driving, they are more dangerous than drunk drivers. Falling asleep at the wheel has led to many fatalities of adults and innocent children. When people are very tired and trying to get home from work at night or haven’t quite woken up in the morning, they are essentially in a hypnagogic state.

They may be hallucinating and functioning in a surreal dreamlike state that does not consider the serious consequences of anything. They may be confused about what to do in certain traffic situations such as a 4-way stop or a determining who has the right of way at other intersections. Here are some tips for driving on the highway at night that just may save your life.

1: Drink Coffee with Caution

Caffeine, coffee

Although some people hate caffeine and the energy crash that it can cause hours into the day, it may be a good idea to get in the habit of drinking just a cup to lift the morning fog. They even have flavors of coffee called Morning Fog as a testament to their effectiveness.

If you don’t want to become dependent on the tiring crash-and-burn effect, however, you may want to try a milder stimulant like cocoa-rich chocolate or hot chocolate in the morning. You can even brew your own slightly sweetened or unsweetened cocoa drinks to reduce your calorie intake.

Chocolate contains caffeine but is not as addictive as coffee. Drinking coffee at night can make you more fatigued and should not be the go-to choice when you are doing long bouts of driving on the highways. Nevertheless, a little bit of stimulation can keep you sharper and improve your reaction times.

Sell Your Old Car

The best tip of the many highway driving tips that we can give you is simply to sell your aging vehicle and move into something safer. Driving on the highways, nowadays, can be very intense and may require a lot of concentration as late-model drivers zip along without worries. Late-model drivers often rely on so many safety features to alert them of blind spots and impending collisions but can make it dangerous for you to drive.

Go to Cash for Cars to get rid of that lemon before you run into more serious breakdowns and accidents driving it. They offer you higher-than-average pricing and have a large network to accommodate drivers all over the nation.

Share This Post:

Get an Offer
Receive an instant quote on your vehicle and have it emailed directly to your inbox.