The ultimate pre-departure road trip checklist

Car Care

I-90 might be the longest interstate in the United States, starting in Massachusetts and going for over 3,000 miles all the way to Washington, but I-95, which runs from Maine to Florida, passes through the most states at 16.

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What should you have before setting off on a road trip?

Whether heading out on a family vacation or hitting the road with a group of close friends, a road trip experience can be liberating. 

It doesn’t matter if you’re attempting to cross the country or you’re heading out on a day trip, planning ahead is essential. The last thing you want is to have to veer off course and go searching for a store, or worse, be stuck in the middle of nowhere, hours away from civilization, before you realize you’re missing a few key items. 

Road trip car essentials

Directions

Garmin Drive 51 USA LM GPS Navigator System with Lifetime Maps

We live in the age of smartphones and GPS, where we can pull up maps with the click of a button, so getting lost isn’t as easy as it was 20 years ago. However, knowing where you’re going ahead of time makes it easier to plan where to get food and gas, so you aren’t searching for places to stop in an unfamiliar area. 

Organization

Even if you have only two people in your car, after a couple of hours it can quickly turn into a disaster zone. Keeping the car clean and organized not only makes it easier to find what you’re looking for, it’s also good for your sanity and makes it easier to relax. 

Safety

Garage Monkey Engineering LED Road Safety Flare

Make sure your insurance is up-to-date, you have a roadside assistance plan and a spare tire. It doesn’t hurt to make sure you pack a safety flare kit

mophie USB A Car Charger 12w

Sometimes it’s the little things like a working phone charger or adapter that can prevent you from getting stuck without the ability to call for help. 

Road trip car accessory essentials

Drive Auto Products Car Trunk Storage Organizer with Straps 

Drive Auto Products Car Trunk Storage Organizer with Straps 

This collapsible and secure car trunk storage organizer with a tie-down strap system will keep your items in place, no matter how many stops or the terrain. The multi-compartment system has enough space to keep all of your road trip essentials in their correct place.

Sold by Amazon

Royce Leather Car Organizer

Royce Leather Car Organizer

Keep all of your important documents for your road trip within arm’s reach when using this high-end leather car organizer with zippered compartments.

Sold by Kohl’s

YETI Tundra 45 Cooler

YETI Tundra 45 Cooler

Referred to as the best cooler on the market, the extra-thick FatWall design and ColdLock Gasket will keep all your road trip snacks perfectly cool. It features a separation rack that keeps each of your items at their ideal temperature. Extremely strong and durable, this cooler can hold up to 28 cans or 34 pounds of ice.

Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods

Fenix E12 V2.0 Flashlight

Fenix E12 V2.0 Flashlight

Powered with a single AA battery, this upgraded flashlight has the capacity to produce 160 lumens. It’s easy to operate and is made from top-grade aluminum and has an ultra-thin optical lens.

Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods and Amazon

Mongoora Magnetic Phone Mount

Mongoora Magnetic Phone Mount

Keep yourself and your passengers safe by using a hands-free car phone mount that easily plugs into the vent. It’s universally compatible with any model or size of a smartphone. The frame rotates, which makes it easy to adjust for your best view. 

Sold by Amazon

Wolli - The Window Seat Headrest Pillow

Wolli – The Window Seat Headrest Pillow

Designed specifically to support the head and neck for leaning against the window, this pillow will help you get some sleep when it’s your turn to nap. Made with a memory foam interior and removable shell, this stylish pillow is easy to fit into small spaces when traveling.

Sold by Amazon

Reserwa Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pocket

Reserwa Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pocket

It may feel impossible to keep your car clean during road trips until you snag a car trash can that easily loops to the seat. The waterproof lining prevents any leakage, and the easy-to-dispose bag makes it simple to drop off your trash during any pit stop.

Sold by Amazon

Cozybiub Premium 2-Pack Car Side Window Sun Shades

Cozybiub Premium 2-Pack Car Side Window Sun Shades

This easy-to-install max-stretch window sunshade provides UV protection to keep you cool on your road trip. Made from nylon, spandex and heavy-duty rubber, these sunshades make long drives much more comfortable.

Sold by Amazon

Active Era Small First Aid Kit

Active Era Small First Aid Kit

This first aid kit offers 90 essential items in a portable, compact, lightweight, durable and water-resistant soft case. It includes medical scissors, instant cold packs, emergency foil blankets and every type of bandage you can imagine to ensure you have everything you need in case of emergency.

Sold by Amazon

Road trip essentials for you

Wellness 17-Ounce Double-Wall Stainless Steel Water Bottle

Wellness 17-Ounce Double-Wall Stainless Steel Water Bottle

This affordable eco-friendly water bottle can keep you hydrated, especially when traveling in remote areas where the pit stops are less frequent. This stainless steel bottle fits in most cupholders and can keep your drinks cold for a full day.

Sold by Kohl’s 

CraveBox Care Package

CraveBox Care Package

Pack your snacks ahead of time to save cash for other road trip adventures with this 45-count snack pack filled with everything from crunchy treats to all the sweets you could crave. They’re individually wrapped in snack pack sizes, so nothing goes to waste. 

Sold by Amazon

Thermos 16-Ounce Stainless Steel King Mug With Handle

Thermos 16-Ounce Stainless Steel King Mug With Handle

Long nights on the road require a caffeine fix, and this mug keeps your coffee hot for 7 hours. It features a DrinkLock sealing lid to prevent spills. 

Sold by Kohl’s and Amazon

SEPHORA COLLECTION Reusable Travel Container Set

SEPHORA COLLECTION Reusable Travel Container Set

This five-piece reusable travel container set allows you to bring all your bath and body products from home, so you don’t have to purchase new ones for the trip. The easy-to-wash containers can be used again.

Sold by Sephora

 

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