When riding in a car, many people would prefer to be the passenger rather than the driver. However, many passengers are unaware of how to act in the role or how to convey it successfully or how to be a good co-driver.
You might be astonished to learn that you are capable of or have done things that are potentially dangerous to the driver. One of the reasons passengers are oblivious of their unpleasant behaviour is that no one, including the driver, dares to call it out.
However, if we continue to ignore poor passenger behaviour, they will believe they are correct since no one has warned them otherwise. That is why in this article, we would discuss the Dos and Don’ts of a co-driver.
Read on to learn about some of the points that should be kept in mind while travelling, since this is how your drivers will respect you:
Do not distract the driver
It’s important to remember that not all drivers are adept at multitasking. Some of them are only capable of concentrating on one task at a time. You are doing your driver a huge favour by speaking quietly or wearing an earpiece while using your smartphone.
Hearing your conversation may cause your driver to become inattentive. It’s advised not to take phone calls while driving unless it’s truly a life or death situation. Once you’ve arrived at your location, you can begin returning missed calls.
You should also not do any unnecessary things that cause your driver to lose attention, and that might cause an accident.
Assist the driver
A good passenger supports the driver by assisting him through difficult situations. It would be beneficial if you were continually on the alert for anything that the driver might not see or detect straight away. Helping him park in tight spaces, alerting him to a hazardous motorist behind him, or assisting him with toll fees preparation will be very appreciated.
You can also assist the driver with road navigation in the absence of a GPS by reading the map and walking outside to ask people for instructions.
Don’t be over-reactive
There is no point in doing so. Passengers getting terrified on the road is understandable, especially if the driver is in a tight place. If you find yourself in this situation, the rule of thumb is to never demonstrate your anxiety by shouting or raising your voice. Because this type of behaviour can make the drivers nervous and cause them to lose attention.
Overreacting in stressful situations isn’t helpful to the driver, and it can make things worse, so do everyone a favour and learn to regulate your emotions.
Don’t pass unnecessary comments
Did you know that many passengers are unaware that they have driven in the backseat at one time or another? Some people believe that being a backseat driver is acceptable, especially if you know the driver well. In actuality, you’ll irritate the driver and cause him to lose concentration on the road.
Unless you’ve driven before, you’ll never understand how irritating it can be when your co-drivers love to give you unwanted commentary on your driving abilities. It’s fine to provide suggestions, but directing the driver what to do is another issue.
Be a thoughtful traveller
Most drivers treat their cars as if they were their second home, which is why they take such good care of them. Huge gestures are not required, but if you are a regular passenger, it won’t hurt to show some concern for the vehicle.
Ensure the vehicle is not littered by not dropping food or drinks, and be mindful of your surroundings to avoid damage, dents, or scrapes.
Be a sensitive co-driver
Some passengers fall into this category, and most drivers remain silent when it comes to in sensitive individuals. You should also be compassionate enough to offer to shoulder a percentage of the expenses if you want to leave an impression with the driver or car owner.
Always note that if you share a ride with the driver virtually every day, it is not fair for the driver to bear all of the costs of fuel, tolls, and parking. Please don’t wait for the driver to request your half; it’s always better to be proactive and pay your share right away.
Don’t put your feet on Dashboard
It’s not only dangerous, but it’s also disgusting. This isn’t your average couch; it’s our prized car! Stay off the sprint with your stinky feet. No one likes it once you do that.
Don’t smoke or eat without permission
Please hold off on cutting into your Cheese quesadilla or cracking the lid on your beef lo mein until you arrive at your location. Crumbs and debris can get stuck between the seat and the console, and food odours can be difficult to get rid of. Let’s not even talk about lighting a cigarette.
Do let the driver choose songs
We’d prefer the last say on what’s playing through the speakers if we’re doing the wheel maintenance. Suggestions for music, podcasts, or radio stations are welcome but don’t take it personally if the driver rejects them.
Do always use your seatbelts
You’ve probably heard your parents, family members, driving instructors, and even folks on the news repeatedly stress the need to wear a seatbelt, and it’s because it’s true. It is one of the most important safety features found in automobiles.
They will keep you from hitting the windscreen or steering wheel and being flung about the car in the terrible case of a collision. And, most significantly, it’s against the law if you do not wear them!
Do not block the driver’s view
Try not to obscure the driver’s view when they are on the road because every second counts.
Don’t try to be the irritating passenger in the backseat who blocks the rearview while driving. You can be putting your safety in jeopardy.
Always be aware of your surroundings and avoid becoming a source of distraction for your driver.
Do keep your cool
Passengers should always have a calm demeanour while on the road. Keep your cool if your driver makes a mistake; everyone makes mistakes.
Stay calm and silent to allow your driver to focus on the road. Any strong emotion could make things even more difficult for you both.
Your driver is unable to deal with your emotional crises because they have a lot to deal with while on the road. So be patient and keep your calm. Sometimes your calmness can avoid a major accident.
Advise the driver that texting while driving is not a good idea
Advise the driver that they should not text while driving. You can act as a designated texter if the message is important. There are very high chances of an accident when the driver is texting or attending a call while driving.
Be a good co-driver
You may offer to assist with navigation, gently pointing out any road signs or diversions that the driver may have missed, and, if you sense symptoms of exhaustion, explain that you could need a break yourself and indicate when the next services are scheduled.
When a tricky crossroads is approaching, or you can see the driver is struggling to concentrate, it may also be beneficial to turn off the chat and any music. Avoid the old standby of turning on the interior lights when driving at night, as this can impair the driver’s night vision.
Minding the door
Passengers must be able to enter and exit in the safest possible manner. To avoid obstructing vehicles on the road, extreme caution must be exercised when opening the door. It’s also important to make sure a passenger exits when a vehicle is safely parked.
Don’t ask your driver to rush
It’s aggravating to be late for appointments, but risky driving isn’t the solution. Increases in average speed are directly proportional to the chance and severity of a collision. According to the WHO, every 1% increase in mean speed results in a 4% increase in the chance of a fatal crash. Always remember that arriving late is preferable to not arriving at all. So do not ask your driver to rush.
If you’re travelling with children in the car, your position as a passenger is likely to change to one of crowd control. Limiting driver diversions and preventing accidents requires keeping children safe and quiet in the car. Because the children often do something that causes the driver to lose focus on driving and the chances of an accident increase significantly.
Take nothing that isn’t yours
If you see food in the glove box, for example, leave them in the glove box. Yes, that chocolate bar piqued your interest, but it’s best if you keep your hands to yourself until the driver says you can take it. Taking something that isn’t yours is also stealing, regardless of how close you are to the person.
It is critical to recognize that we, as passengers, can manage our behaviour to avoid fatal accidents and devastating repercussions. Express your feelings if you don’t feel safe driving with certain passengers in the car. It is far more vital to feel comfortable and secure when driving than to give in to other people’s pressures.