Weekend road trips are an affordable way to explore new places and create lasting memories with friends or family. You will love the freedom of being on the open road, including making impromptu stops and changes to your itinerary.
Before you hit the road, you will need some essential items for a hassle-free and enjoyable experience. Packing everything you need will ensure you can relax and focus on having fun.
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Here are the top ten essential items for road trips.
Driving License and Vehicle Documents
You cannot drive on the road without a valid driving license. If you are renting a car, ensure to carry your rental agreement. It is also necessary to have your vehicle registration and insurance information handy. These documents will be required if you get pulled over or in the event of an accident.
Keep your registration and proof of insurance when driving your car. Your names should be on both documents as the primary driver. If you are a non-US citizen, you will need an International Driving Permit. You need a versatile and capable vehicle for long road trips.
Your car emergency box should carry items that will help you in case of a breakdown or accident.
At a minimum, your emergency kit should include:
– A first-aid kit
– A flashlight
– Jumper cables
– An emergency reflector triangle or road flares
– A fire extinguisher
– Basic tools (screwdriver, pliers, wrench)
– A gallon of water
– Non-perishable snacks
– A map of the area
You may also want to add items like a blanket and a portable phone charger. If you are traveling with children, pack additional items such as diapers, formula, and toys.
Toiletries and Personal Items
You will need to pack your toiletries and personal essentials just as you would for any other trip. Include items like shampoo, soap, deodorant, toothpaste, and sunscreen. Don’t forget your hairbrush, razor, and makeup if you use them.
Spare Tires and Carjack
Spare wheels will save your day when you have a puncture. Most cars come with a spare tire, but you should check if it is properly inflated and in good condition. You can purchase tires at most auto parts stores if your car has no spare.
You will also need a car jack and lug wrench to change the tire. Store them in the trunk of your car so you can easily access them when necessary.
Clothes and Shoes
Packing the right clothes and shoes will make your road trip more comfortable. Bring a few changes of clothes, breathable fabrics in the summer, and layers for colder weather.
A swimsuit will be necessary when visiting the beach. Also, ensure your shoes are comfortable for long walks and hikes. You may want to pack a pair of flip-flops or sandals to change into to let your feet breathe.
Gadgets and Entertainment
If you are traveling with kids, pack books, coloring books, and small toys to keep them occupied. Adults may want to bring along their laptops, tablets, or e-readers. Ensure you pack the charging cords, external batteries, and any other necessary accessories.
You will also need a way to play music in the car. An aux cord or Bluetooth speaker will do the trick. But avoid using your phone to play music for long periods as it will drain the battery.
Long journeys can be tiring, so carry comfortable travel pillows for everyone in the car. They will help you sleep better and stay refreshed for the ride. But if you are prone to motion sickness, pack medication or ginger candies.
Hand Wash or Sanitizer
The current pandemic makes it necessary to ensure your hands are clean. Pack a small bottle of hand sanitizer or wipes to clean your hands when soap and water are unavailable.
Pack disinfectant wipes to clean surfaces in the car. Wipe the steering wheel, door handles, and gear shift before use. And don’t forget to wash your hands after using them.
Eating on a road trip can be expensive and unhealthy. Packing a portable cooler with snacks and drinks will save you money and keep you fueled for the journey. Fill your cooler with fruits like melons, grapes, and apples.
Also, pack sandwiches, chips, trail mix, and other non-perishable snacks. Remember to pack some ice packs to keep your food and drinks fresh.
A Dash Cam
Creating memories on the road is one of the best parts of a road trip. A dashboard camera will help you capture all the special moments. They are also ideal for recording accidents or illegal activity.
Install your dashcam on the dashboard and carry charged batteries before setting off on your trip. You can use the footage to create a travel diary or photo album when you return home.
Planning a road trip may require extra effort, but it is worth it when you get to experience all the amazing things this world has to offer. By following these tips, you can have a safe and enjoyable journey. Ensure you have the proper insurance coverage for your car and a valid driver’s license.