7 Tips for Delivery Drivers to Avoid Traffic Jams

Concept of how to avoid traffic jams

Traffic jams are a major annoyance.

You’re stuck in your car, surrounded by other frustrated drivers, and you can’t do anything but inch forward until, finally, you’re free. The whole experience is frustrating, stressful, and a waste of time.

Traffic congestion can cause missed appointments, late arrivals, lost productivity, and significant economic losses. According to a report by INRIX, only New York lost $11 billion due to traffic congestion in 2019. Then there is Los Angeles, infamous for its traffic gridlock, and other prominent U.S. cities.

In short, traffic jams are a significant inconvenience, and it is crucial to avoid them whenever possible.

While it might seem impossible to avoid traffic congestion, below are a few strategies to ensure you never get stuck in gridlock again.

1. Plan Your Route Ahead of Time to Avoid Traffic Congestion

Before you begin your journey, planning your route in advance is always a good idea. This way, you can avoid traffic, will know how long it will take to get to your destination, and you can make sure to take breaks along the way.

Vehicle routing software like Route4Me route planner can help here. It helps plan well-optimized routes for unlimited stops in advance in just 30 seconds. The software considers traffic congestion and other constraints such as weather, one-ways, and roadblocks that could slow down drivers.

Route4Me route planning process

Route4Me’s multi-stop route planner also helps you schedule daily routes and automate resource scheduling. Plus, it helps reschedule already active or optimized routes.

In addition, Route4Me’s route optimizer helps schedule deliveries for repeat orders and visit customers using a repeating schedule. This way, you can put route planning and dispatch on autopilot and plan routes up to a year in advance.

Learn in detail how Route4Me helps optimize route scheduling.

2. Deliver During Off-Peak Hours

Another way to avoid traffic is to deliver during off-peak hours. You can save time and money and reduce stress levels by delivering during times of the day when fewer cars are on the road.

Also, you or your drivers will have more control over their routes as they won’t compete with other vehicles for space on the roads. This would help deliver packages quickly and safely.

Furthermore, delivering during off-peak hours helps to reduce overall traffic congestion in cities and towns by taking cars off the roads at busy times of day (or night).

Rush hour often varies from city to city, so you need to keep yourself updated. For example, according to Wikipedia, morning traffic gets heavy in New York between 6.30 and 10 am. While in Northeast Ohio, near Cleveland, the best time to avoid traffic is between 7.30 to 8.30 am. And there is also afternoon and night traffic.

Of course, you may not be able to avoid the peak times if you have urgent or time-sensitive deliveries to make. But if you don’t have that obligation, deliver when the traffic is lightest.

3. Keep Yourself Informed with the Latest Traffic Reports

Even if you know the peak traffic hours in your city, there could be times when traffic is high beyond the standard timeline due to unanticipated situations.

For example, a long queue of vehicles could be stuck in traffic due to a heavy snowstorm or rain or a major accident on the highway. That’s why staying updated about the latest traffic reports is critical to make deliveries promptly and efficiently.

Furthermore, being up-to-date on traffic news is essential for drivers’ safety and cutting down fuel costs.

There are several ways to stay updated about the latest traffic reports. One way is to listen to the radio. Many radio stations now offer traffic reports that can help you avoid congestion.

Another way to stay informed about traffic conditions is to check the news, download weather or traffic-related app, or follow the local social media pages that publish traffic updates and accidents.

However, you don’t need to spend time searching for the latest weather or traffic report when using a multi-stop route planner.

For example, Route4Me’s delivery route planner works with Apple Maps, Google Maps, and Waze for real-time traffic updates to plan optimized routes free from bad weather and traffic.

4. Use Alternate Routes When Possible

You should plan multiple alternative routes to avoid traffic congestion. Planning alternate routes provide options that can be used depending on the current traffic conditions. This helps delivery drivers to bypass congested areas and make their deliveries on time.

Also, knowing multiple routes gives you flexibility and allows you to adjust your plans depending on the situation.

If one route is blocked due to an accident or construction, your drivers will have other options. Plus, planning alternate routes helps reduce stress since you or delivery drivers can anticipate potential delays and prepare accordingly.

Knowing you have options if something unexpected happens can go a long way toward reducing anxiety while behind the wheel.

Manually planning routes or modifying them is erroneous and time-consuming. Instead, use a route planner app like Route4Me to do it automatically.

With Route4Me, you can add new stops or re-optimize an existing route. As soon as you modify, the software automatically updates the route across all the devices associated with your Route4Me account. Your drivers can see route changes in real-time, and you don’t need to update your drivers by calling them up.


Want To See For Yourself How Route4Me Can Help Avoid Traffic Jams?

Whether you want to optimize routes, make more stops in less time, or reduce fuel costs… Route4Me helps you achieve that!


5. Avoid Driving Aggressively

Another way to avoid traffic congestion is to drive defensively. Aggressive driving, such as tailgating, weaving in and out of traffic, and speeding, increases the risk of an accident, which can quickly lead to a jam.

In addition, reckless driving is often the cause of road rage, leading to dangerous and unpredictable situations.

Defensive driving practices such as obeying traffic laws, maintaining a safe following distance, and being aware of your surroundings can help you avoid accidents and road rage. As a result, it’s always best to err on the side of caution when behind the wheel.

Custom Image - What is defensive driving?

6. Signal When Changing Lanes or Turning

You’re driving down the highway and come to a section where the lane ends, and you have to merge with traffic in the next lane. If you don’t signal, the driver in the car behind you will get frustrated and may even honk at you. If everyone in the merging lane does not signal, it can cause a traffic jam.

By signaling early, drivers have time to adjust their speed and position. This also allows other drivers to anticipate your move and plan accordingly.

So next time you’re stuck in traffic, signal when changing lanes or turning. It’s a simple courtesy that can help keep traffic flowing smoothly.

7. Be Patient and Take Your Time

Always be patient to avoid traffic. Rushing through things usually means that we make more mistakes.

For example, when we’re cooking a meal, rushing through the preparation can result in a burned or undercooked dish. Or, if we’re trying to put together a piece of furniture, being impatient can lead to frustration and even injuries. In both cases, it’s better to slow down, take time, and do the job right.

Similarly, if you’re in a hurry while driving, the temptation is to speed up and squeeze into gaps in traffic. But this can often make the situation worse, as it can lead to accidents or make other drivers angry.

Take your time. If you can afford to leave a little earlier or take a different route, do so. This will help you avoid the worst traffic and arrive at your destination feeling calm and relaxed.

Remember that traffic jams are often out of our control. So try not to get too stressed about them. After all, there’s nothing you can do but sit back and wait for the traffic to clear.

Final Thoughts about Avoiding Traffic Congestion

Traffic jams are a frustrating reality of modern life. However, there are several things that you or your drivers can do to avoid them.

By using alternate routes, being patient and taking your time, using a map route planner, signaling when changing lanes or turning, and driving defensively, drivers can help keep the roads safe and traffic congestion to a minimum.

So next time you’re stuck in traffic, remember these tips and do your part to reduce road congestion.


Want To See For Yourself How Route4Me Can Help Avoid Traffic Jams?

Whether you want to optimize routes, make more stops in less time, or reduce fuel costs… Route4Me helps you achieve that!



About Route4Me

Route4Me has over 40,000 customers globally. Route4Me's Android and iPhone mobile apps have been downloaded over 2 million times since 2009. Extremely easy-to-use, Route4Me's apps create optimized routes, synchronize routes to mobile devices, enable communication with drivers and customers, offer turn-by-turn directions, delivery confirmation, and more. Behind the scenes, Route4Me's operational optimization platform combines high-performance algorithms with data science, machine learning, and big data to plan, optimize, and analyze routes of almost any size in real-time.