Field sales representatives have to spend a lot of time driving. Hours on the road can be tiring and can eat away at one’s wallet with gas and service charges. However, spending a lot of time on the road doesn’t have to be a bad thing. There are strategies for frequent drivers to make time spent on the road productive, energizing, and even fun. If you’re a sales rep who spends a lot of time driving, consider these tips for a better driving experience:
Save on gas.
Regardless of what kind of car you have, there are ways to maximize gas mileage. Even if you’re not paying for it out of pocket, chances are your company wants you to do what you can to save. To help your gas mileage, don’t be aggressive – conservative driving can improve your fuel performance by 33%.
Avoid frequently accelerating, decelerating, and speeding; after you go above 50 miles per hour, gas mileage decreases. Using cruise control will allow you to maximize fuel efficiency and avoid unnecessary braking. While highway speed limits will force you to travel well above the 50 miles per hour threshold, you can still save by using the right lane and going as close to the posted limit as possible.
There are plenty of apps on the market to help track your driving behavior and find the best priced gasoline nearby. Tracking your driving tendencies with third-party technology gives you an objective view on how you’re performing. As for fuel prices, Gas Buddy is a popular free app that locates nearby gas stations and gives you real-time price quotes. It can be downloaded on Androids, iPhones, and BlackBerrys and is one of the most intuitive apps of its kind.
Maintain your car.
You’re going to spend a lot of time in your car as a traveling sales rep. Maintaining a clean and functional car makes this time much more enjoyable and less stressful. Stay on top of things like regular checkups, oil changes, and tire rotations. By having your car tuned on a regular basis and maintaining the optimal tire pressure, you can increase performance and avoid unnecessary setbacks.
Stop and stretch.
Recent studies show people who sit all day die younger. These studies mainly focused on people in the office, but the fact applies to drivers, too. Spending long hours in the driver’s seat can be detrimental to your health. It also can cause muscle stiffness and back problems. On long road trips, it’s good to stop often, get out of the car, and walk around for a few minutes. This will also energize you, so you won’t be overly fatigued at the wheel.
Try an audiobook.
Sales reps are busy. There’s only so much time in the day for leisure activities like reading. However, one advantage of driving is the ability to listen to audiobooks. More books than ever before are available in audio form, so if you find long drives boring, listen to a book you’ve been waiting to read.
There are lots of places to eat off a highway. An ice cream, burger, or other treat can make a road trip a fun occasion.
…But don’t overdo it. If you’re driving frequently, you’re going to be tempted by fast food. It’s the easiest food available for drivers, and it’s cheap and tastes good. Unfortunately, eating fast food habitually can lead to health problems, like hypertension. It can also make you fatigued, as the simple sugars in a lot of fast foods have this side effect. Try packing your own meals to avoid eating fast food too often.
Being on the road doesn’t have to be a drag. Your time driving can be fun and engaging, as well as a money saver, if you follow these tips.