The weather has been all over the place these past few months; one day we’re rocking our shorts and t-shirt and the next we’re freezing our tootsies off! As autumn moves into winter, the temperature is sure to be in single – if not minus – digits, so don’t get caught off guard. Make sure you’re ahead of the game this winter:
1. Download a weather app
With our phones in our hands 24/7 these days, we have all the information we need at our fingertips – literally. If a weather app doesn’t come preloaded on your phone, download a reliable (well, as reliable as it can be when dealing with fickle weather) version such as BBC Weather
or the Met Office app
2. Invest in a mobile charger
Picture it: it’s dark and stormy outside, a huge gust of wind has knocked the power out and – horror of horrors – you only have 1% battery left on your phone! It’s a modern day nightmare but it can be avoided by ensuring you always carry a mobile charger with you. Connect it to your phone and in a few minutes you’ll be charged up and ready to Instagram your power outage antics to all your followers.
3. Candles and matches and torches, oh my!
In the event that your power does go out, you’ll need to source light from somewhere. Stockpile pillar candles (they’re sturdy and less likely to get knocked over) and matches in an easy-to-get-to place so you can grab them in the dark. Place them around the house for light and heat, but remember safety first! For the less adventurous (or for those who don’t want to re-enact a Victorian winter’s evening) make sure you have a couple of torches and plenty of batteries to tide you over until the power is restored.
4. Emergency supplies
For commuters – whether you travel by car, by bus, by train or by foot – winter is a tricky time of year. Bad weather can mean chaos on the roads so it’s best to be prepared for anything. Pack a small backpack with some essentials – water, snacks, gloves/hand warmers, first aid kit, torch, an extra jumper, socks – and carry it with you on your commute. It might sound excessive but you never know when you might need it! If you travel by bus, make sure you’re up to date with what’s happening on your service with the live time tracking on the Stagecoach Bus App.
5. Stay tuned
While we’re all mostly reliant on Social Media (news – and gossip – travels pretty fast these days) one of the best ways to keep up to date with what’s going on in your area is by listening to the local radio. From school closures to traffic jams, radio stations are often among the first to report any changes.
6. Clear the way
It’s so lovely to sip hot chocolate from the comfort of your armchair as you watch the pretty snowflakes fall. It’s not so lovely when you remember you have to leave the house and venture out, ankle deep, into the snow! Bundle up, grab a shovel and get that path cleared. Why not clear your neighbour’s path, too, as a festive good deed?
7. Buy a warm winter coat
It’s all very good looking amazing in your designer coat but if your teeth are chattering and your nose is running, chances are you chose fashion over substance. Do as your mother told you and buy a sensible warm coat – something that’s well lined, made of a heavy material and makes you feel super cosy – it’s a winter essential!
8. Winter superheroes
The last thing you want to do in an emergency is waste time Googling a telephone number (or looking up the Yellow Pages). Burst pipes, flooding, power cuts, they all sound grim but they’ll happen to some of us this winter. Make sure you’re prepared with numbers for the local water/power/gas companies, local plumbers and electricians so they can swoop in and save the day. For good measure, include your internet provider, just in case there’s a Netflix-related emergency!
9. Stay merry and bright!
Winter is the time when all the nasty bugs come out to play. Whether it’s the common cold, full on flu or, the worst of the worst, man flu, everyone is fair game for the germs. Stock up on cold/flu medicines (if you’re eligible for a flu jab, do it!), hand sanitisers and plenty of tissues. Oh, and chocolate, lots of chocolate (for medicinal purposes, of course).
Keep up-to-date with live bus times - download the Stagecoach Bus App