Road Trip Hack

10 Things You're Forgetting to Pack on Your Road Trip

Tips for road trip

Ah, the open road – there's nothing quite like the promise of a new adventure, the scenic routes, the eclectic roadside attractions, and the endless playlist of your favorite tunes.

But as any seasoned road tripper knows, a successful journey isn't just about the places you'll visit; it's also about what you bring along for the ride. Whether you're a young-hearted explorer or a wise wanderer, there are a few things you might be overlooking in your packing list.

Here's my take, as someone who’s clocked more miles than a migratory bird, on those sneaky essentials you don’t want to leave behind.



1. The Lifesaver Kit: First Aid Essentials

Remember that time I tripped over my own feet at a rest stop and ended up with a scraped knee? Well, I would've given anything for a band-aid then. Your first aid kit should be like a mini hospital – because when you're in the middle of nowhere, and the nearest pharmacy is a dot on the horizon, you'll need it. Stock it with bandages, antiseptics, pain relievers, allergy meds, and your prescription medications.

First Aid Essentials


2. Key to Sanity: Spare Vehicle Keys

Ever locked your keys in the car during a pit-stop? If you haven't, take it from me – it's not fun. On a particularly memorable road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway, a spare key saved me from a long wait for a locksmith. Keep a spare set hidden in your wallet or travel bag - somewhere separate from the originals. It's the kind of thing you might not need, but when you do, it's a real day saver.



3. Stay Inflated: Tire Pressure Gauge and Inflator

Rolling on the road with improperly inflated tires is like trying to run in the sand – tough and bound to wear you out (or, in this case, your tires). I learned the hard way when a slow leak left me stranded in the desert heat. A good tire pressure gauge and a portable inflator are essential for maintaining tire health and fuel efficiency. Not sure how to gauge your tires? Bridgestone has a simple guide.



4. Car Entertainment Game-changer: Transcend Car Box

When you think about the classic road trip, you might envision singing along to your favorite tunes or playing "I Spy" with your travel companions. But let's be real, sometimes you need a bit of modern entertainment, and that's where a Transcend Car box ,a YouTube/Netflix streaming device, can come into play.

Stream to car via Transcend Car Box

Imagine you're pulling into the campground after a full day of driving. The stars are out, the crickets are chirping, and you're nestled in your cozy vehicle or RV. You've chatted about everything under the sun, played every car game you know, and you're ready to unwind. Here's the beauty of having a portable streaming device with you:

Downtime Entertainment: Long drives can be exhausting, and there's nothing like kicking back and watching a few episodes of your favorite show or a movie on car screen to relax at the end of the day. A streaming device can turn your vehicle or RV into a mobile movie theater, providing a familiar comfort from home.

Weather Downtime: I remember a time when a sudden storm hit during what was supposed to be a perfect weekend getaway. With outdoor activities out of the question, my travel buddies and I were incredibly grateful for the foresight of bringing along a Transcend Car Box. It turned a potentially cabin-fever-inducing situation into a cozy movie marathon.

Keeping Kids and Passengers Occupied: If you're traveling with kids or passengers who might not be as enthusiastic about the journey, a car streaming device can be a lifesaver. Loading up on educational YouTube videos or Netflix shows on car screen can keep the young (and young at heart) entertained and maybe even provide a learning experience while on the road.

Transcend Car Box is a good helper for your road trip. 




5. The Handy Helper: A Multi-Tool

There's a saying among us road trippers: "If you can't fix it with a multi-tool, it's probably not worth fixing on the road." Whether it's a loose screw on your license plate or a stubborn packet of snacks, a multi-tool has got your back. Opt for one with pliers, a blade, a screwdriver, and a bottle opener – you'll be amazed at how often it comes in handy.


Multi-Tool for road trip


6. Hydration Station: Water Containers

Hydration is key, especially when you're munching on salty snacks and basking in the sun that's pouring through your windshield. A couple of reusable water containers will ensure you always have water at hand, especially in remote areas where pit stops are few and far between. If you're feeling extra prepared, pack a water filter or purification tablets – they're compact and can be a game-changer for tapping into natural water sources.



7. Munchies Management: Non-Perishable Snacks

There's nothing worse than the hunger grumbles when the next food stop is hours away. Trust me, I’ve been there, and a hangry driver is not a happy driver. Stack up on trail mix, nuts, dried fruits, and granola bars. They don't take up much space, they don't require refrigeration, and they can be absolute lifesavers when you’re in the middle of a rural expanse with nothing but fields for company.



8. Let There Be Light: Flashlight and Extra Batteries

A flashlight is like a good friend – it’s there for you during the darkest times, like when you drop your keys outside at a midnight bathroom break at a campsite (yep, been there too). Get a durable, high-lumen flashlight that can light up the night, and don't forget extra batteries or a charging method. The American Red Cross suggests keeping a flashlight in your emergency kit – and I completely agree.



9. Get Connected: Emergency Contact List

We all rely on our smartphones, but when your battery is dead and you're out of signal range, that piece of tech isn't much use. A physical list of emergency contacts, including family, roadside assistance, and insurance info, can be a lifeline in a pinch. Write it down, print it out, and keep it in your glove box.



10. Old-School Navigation: Maps and Guidebooks

GPS is great until you find yourself in a signal dead zone with no clue where to go next. On a trip to remote parts of Yellowstone, my trusty map and guidebook were my guides when my phone gave up. They offer more than just directions; they're a treasure trove of information about scenic spots, rest areas, and points of interest. Plus, there's something undeniably romantic about tracing your route on a physical map.




Packing for a road trip is an art form, and it can be easy to overlook the less obvious items in favor of the essentials like clothes and toiletries. But it's often these unsung heroes that can turn a trip from good to great. So next time you're loading up the trunk and double-checking your list, give a thought to these easy-to-forget road trip essentials. They might just save your trip from turning into an unintended adventure. Now hit the road, my fellow travelers, and may your journey be as smooth as the fresh tarmac under your wheels.

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