Are you thinking of taking a road trip? Even if you aren’t, you should. Why? Well, all of us need to and deserve to unwind and disentangle from our everyday lives. And as Dalai Lama once wisely said, “Once a year, go someplace you have never seen before.” Road trips are quite crucial for mental health and relationships. It gives you time with your family. It allows you to isolate yourself from your daily concerns and let out the pent–up energy within you.
Have we got you convinced? Now, it is our job to make sure you are ready for your road trip. A survey was conducted in 2017 where 1000 US families were questioned about their road trip worried. The results showed that 57% of families find road trips stressful. Now, this makes road trip counterproductive. However, an easy way to combat this stress is being well–prepared for your journey. This includes packing properly.
Here are seven of the things that you will need for your road trip.
1. Car safety items
You are going to spend a significant portion of your trip in your vehicle. The quality of your overall experience thereby would be correlated with how comfortable the ride is. Apart from ensuring comfort, you must also make sure that your car is safe for such a road trip. This is why you must pack essential items like extra tires, car manuals, flashlights, oil, jumper cables, and headlamps. To make room for other items, the best way to pack these items in your car is by using a packing cube and storing it in the trunk or under your car seat.
Also, make sure you check that your car is good enough to be driven for long miles. The older your vehicle gets, the more dangerous it is to drive it. On a different note, we would recommend that you sell off your car before it reaches this point and gets a new one instead. Various dealers would tell you that we want your car!. Sell it off at the right time.
2. Paper maps
The last thing you need is to get lost in a foreign country or area. You might be thinking, “Well, this is 2018! We have our phones for our online maps!”. While online maps are what you will be using for most parts of your journey, there is always a probability that there might not be continuous cell service where you go. You might argue that offline maps can come in handy at such times. Again, technology can be unpredictable. Carrying a paper mapas a backup makes sure that you are never clueless about the direction. Considering how light such maps are, it can’t hurt to keep one to be on the safe side!
3. First aid kit
The best policy is to always hope for the best to occur while preparing for the worst possible scenario. This is why you must always carry a first aid kit during road trips. You never know the quality of healthcare provided in the place you are visiting. You never know when an emergency strikes. This is why carrying a first aid kit (one which has needles) is of utmost importance. Also, make sure you invest in travel insurance before your road trip so that your health expenses can be covered regardless of where you are.
4. Sources of Entertainment
There is a designated role for everyone on the road trip. While someone brings food, someone needs to take charge of entertainment. If you are going on a road trip, you would need entertainment of some sort. After all, you will be on the road for hours. This is why it is important to bring along music, audiobooks, and podcasts — anything that you and your family or friends could enjoy during the ride. Creating and bringing along the perfect playlist is one of the essential things you can carry in a road trip.
Never rely on gas stations and restaurants along the way of your journey to provide you with food. After all, you never know when you will feel hungry. Also, in many cases, we overestimate how far apart gas stations are and end up feeling hungry for long stretches of the road trip. Not to mention that packing snacks from home is undoubtedly the more cost–effective solution to your hunger needs.
Make sure to pick something light and healthy. Options like dried fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds can be a great source of energy. Treat yourself to cookies. Pack them in two ways. Have some personal ziplock bags as well as bulk bags for refilling. If the food you choose requires cleaning up, make sure to pack wet wipes with you too. If you are traveling with drinks or food that requires a cold temperature, you might want to make an iceless cooler plug as well.
6. Large water bottles
Staying hydrated is very important during road trips especially for the driver. Again, don’t rely on gas stations for water. Instead, carry large water bottles with you which last for a significant portion of the trip. Use your gas station stops to refill your bottles.
Carrying enough water bottles is extremely important especially during summer days. The last thing anyone needs is a heat stroke. So, while you take care of fun, also take care of your health.
7. Comfort items
Cozy blankets. Squishy pillows. Lumbar support pillows. Eye masks. Pack anything which you think will make your road trip more comfortable. However, try to avoid overly bulky things. After all, the more luggage you have, the less space you will have in your car. There is only a limited quantity you can fit inside the trunk!
Keep it light yet comfortable.
Pack these seven essential items for your road trip. Let go of your stress. You and your family deserve a break. Enjoy the moment and make it memorable.
About Michelle Joe: Michelle Joe is a blogger by choice. She loves to discover the world around her. She likes to share her discoveries, experiences, and express herself through her blogs. You can find her on twitter: @michellejoe524