Publication date April 25, 2023

10 Road Trip Essentials for Your Checklist: Hacks for a Day Out on the Road

The best road trips are often a result of good planning. Sometimes, however, we may forget to take along some essential items. It happens to even the best of us. Unfortunately, those little things can get a long way in determining how enjoyable your road trip is and whether you’ll look forward to the next one.

When planning a road trip, you must make a daily checklist of things you need. Now, we are sure you have the most important things covered. Our job is to remind you of the ones that easily slip from your mind and may cause hitches in your trip. Here are 10 top essentials for every road trip:

Blankets and Pillows

Travel essentials

Source: Vera Bradley

Road trips usually require you to stay in the car for long hours, and even the roomiest cars are hardly as comfortable as your home or apartment. It's up to you to bring along as many things as possible to make yourself comfortable. A great example is a blanket or some pillows.

Depending on the weather as you travel, blankets can provide comfort or even supplement the ones you find at motels. Pillows also offer back and neck support, ensuring you don't get cramps or pain from sleeping in uncomfortable positions.

Chargers and Portable Power Banks

Quite a number of people forget their device chargers while packing up for a trip. Usually, you could leave it plugged into your socket while hurrying out to your car. So, it's essential to add the chargers for your phone, laptop, iPad, and camera and a universal power adapter to your packing checklist. It will save you the cost of buying replacements or the inconvenience of making unplanned stops for purchases.

Having your devices die in the middle of your trip is no fun at all. It can ruin the mood. Here's where portable power banks also come in. Be sure to charge them before your trip!

Snacks and Reusable Bottles

Buying snacks beforehand ensures you have your favorite treats to keep you company. Preparing your snacks ahead also allows you to choose almost anything. You could bake some goodies, pack some fruits, or buy them in your area.

It's also essential to carry along some water and stay hydrated. Reusable bottles are great if you find free water dispensers or taps. You can pack some drinks and store them in an ice cooler. This way, you can refresh yourself without waiting to find convenient stops.

Emergency Car Kit

A car should always have an emergency car kit in it. But having one is even more vital if you intend to go on the road for long hours in places you have never been.

You can put together your emergency kit or buy one from a hardware store. The basics are flashlights and batteries, jumper cables, a first aid kit, a blanket, energy bars or snacks, some water, a help sign, and extra car fuses.

First Aid Kit

A first-aid kit isn't just a tiny box with a little cross on it. Although you should have the basics like some antiseptic, plaster, and gauze, ordinary things like painkillers, inhalers, and diarrhea medication are also essential.

We advise that you put together a first-aid kit for yourself. It should include any medication you may be on and your prescription in case you need to restock. It should also contain some painkillers, energy bars, and hand sanitizers.

Spare Change

Travel essentials


Tolls often require you to pay some change when driving through. You should have some handy, as well as your credit cards and other banking necessities. You may pass through areas where their machines are down, or they do not accept cards.

Some spare cash could make the difference between getting a cool drink and staying thirsty until the nearest convenience store. So, carry some spare change with you on your next road adventure.



Source: Wired

Yes, flashlights! These come in handy if you are stranded in the dark and have to fix a bad tire. You can never go wrong with good flashlights and spare batteries. Remember the batteries!

Paper Maps

Travel essentials

Source: TODAY

This may look odd, but it's a good road trip hack. Think about those random moments when it rains, or your battery dies, and you don't have a cell signal to make calls. Now, what if it happens on your trip? Your phone's GPS won't help in local areas or bad weather either.

So, take this precaution seriously. It would make a lot of difference if you hit one of those towns with very little cell service.

Tissue Paper, Wipes, and Toilet Rolls

Travel essentials

Source: The Guardian

Road trippers frequently overlook this one. But it can save you a lot of discomfort if you remember to pack some. Tissues and wipes are must-haves if you want to eat in the car. Imagine spilling a drink or food in the car and having nothing to wipe it up. That's a disaster you can avert if you have some tissue or wipes.

Also, you may need to use the restroom at odd stops or gas stations. Having your toilet roll will make things a lot easier.

Extra Storage

Consider packing some backup storage to take pictures and make a video or twenty. You could use an extra memory card or a flash drive. And no, you don't have to be a professional photographer to add this to your list.

You may need to clear up some space on your phone and backup items you want to clear off. Nothing hurts like being unable to capture beautiful memories because your devices ran out of storage. So, take this seriously and have as much fun as you like!


Road trips are a great way to spend time with your family and friends or to enjoy nature in its simplicity. And while spontaneous trips may be fun, we advise that you take a quick run through this checklist and equip yourself with these road trip essentials. Your best adventures are just a tick away.

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