Road trips is one of the things in life that you need to approach with special responsibility, especially if you’re going on a long distance trip, where you will spend days between cities in towns with no opportunity to run to the nearest store and buy the items you forgot to pack with you. Plus, if you’re travelling with kids, you need to be especially careful, because then your number of road trip necessities doubles. Pack for your road trip with our tips!
1. Car phone charger
If there are several adults going on a trip together, chances are each one of you have at least one mobile phone, not to mention tablets and other devices. In order to always be able to charge your phone, make sure your charger is high quality and reliable, otherwise it will stop working after the fifth or tenth charge and you will end up with a dead phone, or will need to look everywhere for a replacement charger, which means extra costs.
2. Drinking water
If you’re going on a several days-long car trip, it may turn out that you need to drive hundreds of miles to get to the nearest store to buy some necessities. One of the things everyone needs on a road trip is water, so make sure you have enough water for every passenger and for all the days you’ll spend on the trip. Anything can happen, your car can break down in the middle of nowhere, and fresh water will help you survive until the help comes.
3. Engine coolant
Although you are the one going on a trip, your car has needs too. It goes without saying that you need to check the car’s engine and other mechanics to make sure it won’t malfunction on the road. However, a bottle of engine coolant should always be in your car for cases when the engine overheats and risks to be irreparably broken. Be careful: if your engine has overheated, don’t touch it until it cools down, and only then add coolant.
When you’re on a long car trip, there is always a chance to be stopped by the road police. In order to avoid awkward situations where it turns out you forgot important documents at home, remember to pack everything in advance and keep it somewhere near you. You should always have a driver’s license, car registration, and car insurance. If you don’t show the officers any of the documents, you will end up with a fine or even more serious consequences.
5. Supply of cash
Every car trip is usually preceded by creating a budget, but what a lot of travellers fail to take into account is the various emergencies that can happen on the road. These emergencies include urgent medical help, car repairs or car parts, accommodation fees for when you’re stuck in an unknown city while your car is being repaired, and food expenses. Remember to account for these expenses in your travel budget and you’ll never be caught by surprise in case of emergencies.
6. First aid kit
There are a lot of medical conditions that can happen during a car trip – overheating, motion sickness, viruses, injuries from a car crash, being poisoned by spoiled food, headaches, etc. Of course, you cannot plan for every medical emergency possible, but there are a couple of things that should always be in your first aid kit. This includes thin scissors, headache medicine, cold medicine, stomach medicine, Band-Aids, gauze, cotton swabs, antibacterial solution, and antihistamine medicine in case one of the passengers contracts an allergy.
When you’re driving in the middle of nowhere, it can take hours to find a place where you all can eat. This is why keeping a selection of snacks in the car will serve as an emergency stock for times when the nearest stop is hours away. Make sure those snacks don’t go bad too quickly and aren’t too messy to eat. Good snack ideas include cookies and other pastry, fruits and nuts, candy for when you need a quick doze of sugar, and dried meat. Sandwiches go bad too fast, and other types of food can create a mess that you will then have to clean.
8. GPS device
A good old-fashioned map is a great way to avoid getting lost on the road, but if you’re ready for a new-age car trip, pack a modern GPS device with you. This device will tell you exactly where you are, how long it is until you’re at your destination, and will lead you through the turns and stops. You can either use a dedicated GPS navigator, or use your mobile phone with GPS as your road assistant.