Proper Etiquette for Riding Shotgun

The very act of getting into a car with a group of people is often a tumultuous experience that could end friendships. This is because the process of choosing a person to ride shotgun, aka the seat next to the driver, can be very personal. When we were kids, the method of one person crying out “shotgun” first usually won that person the coveted spot. However, that method just isn’t good enough anymore. The seat is usually understood to be taken by the person the driver is closest with, but ultimately, it’s determining who is crowned as copilot of the road trip comes down to a few factors.

Those key factors are the physical conditions of each passenger, age and relationship with the driver. Relationship with the driver is first consideration, followed by age, and the physical build/condition of each rider. For example, the driver’s spouse should always be first up for shotgun, but they may be overruled if another rider has a broken leg. There is a lot of discretion when choosing and it can get confusing, but hopefully it’s a quick process and no feelings are hurt.

Once it’s determined who will be riding shotgun, there are a few duties this person must fulfill and rules they must follow. The driver has a lot on his or her plate by bearing the responsibility of keeping everyone alive and continuously watching the road. That’s where the shotgun rider steps in. It’s his or her job to maintain the happiness of all passengers, and to remind the driver when it’s time to stop to eat, use the bathroom, or stretch.

First, it is understood that the person riding shotgun is in charge of all music choices. If you’re riding with friends, it’s more likely you’ll all have the same taste in music. If, say, you’re driving to a work event with coworkers, you could be faced with one passenger who likes country, another who prefers Broadway show tunes, and your coworker who is reliving his 80s heavy metal days. This can make things very confusing for the person riding shotgun. Ultimately, a system should be established where everyone is happy and feels like their needs are met.

The shotgun rider should be paying attention to all road signs – particularly the ones that let you know how far away the next rest stop is. If it’s a long car ride, it’s likely all riders will need to use the bathroom at different times. If things get tense in the backseat, suggest the driver pull over for a quick stretch if you think a bout of fresh air would do everyone some good.

All in all, the person riding shotgun should be the driver’s right hand man (or woman), and whatever that entails is his or her job. Just like it’s Good2Go Auto Insurance’s job to help provide minimum limits auto insurance coverage to customers.  For your free, no obligation quote, visit today.

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