30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (2024)

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (1)

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Whether you're itching to take the whole family on a budget-friendly road trip, go on a solo adventure, or just prefer driving over flying (especially as we continue to weather the global pandemic)—a little preparation is the key to a hassle-and-drama-free car ride.

When it comes to road trips, helpful tools span the gamut from utilitarian things like maps, backseat garbages, and roof racks to extend the useable space, to health and wellness items like anti-nausea medication and hand sanitizer to keep you healthy, to amusing add-ons like a handheld video game console and a Polaroid camera for entertainment.

To help you come up with the ultimate packing list, we've compiled more than two dozen road trip essentials that will make your travels safer (and more fun!), regardless of whether you're headed to the beach 10 hours from home or embarking on a multi-week cross-country journey. There are plenty of gadgets and gizmos for everyone in the family—couples, kids, toddlers, tweens, and even dogs. So before you strap in, besides your road trip playlist and travel-friendly snacks, make sure you have these ready to go.

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1

For Solo Road Trips

APEMAN Dash Cam 1080P FHD DVR Car Driving Recorder

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1

For Solo Road Trips

APEMAN Dash Cam 1080P FHD DVR Car Driving Recorder

In the event of an accident, a dash cam—a dashboard-mounted camera—ensures you have the proof you need to show you weren't at fault. And bonus:Sometimes your insurance company will even give you a break on your monthly premium just for owning one.

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2

For Couples

Huzi Infinity Pillow

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (3)

2

For Couples

Huzi Infinity Pillow

Now 10% Off

To ensure safety on the road, it's important to take breaks every two hours, saysa senior program manager for the NationalSafetyCouncil. For couples traveling together, take turns driving withyour co-pilot and prepare to comfortably snooze with this fluffy infinity pillow wrapped around your neck.

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3

Amazon's Choice

Tide to Go Instant Stain Remover

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (4)

3

Amazon's Choice

Tide to Go Instant Stain Remover

Spills happen, but having this small and mighty stain stick handy will help ensure you don't have ketchup on the front of your shirt when you reach your destination.

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4

For Emergencies

General Medi Mini First Aid Kit

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4

For Emergencies

General Medi Mini First Aid Kit

Now 31% Off

It's wise to have a first-aid kit on hand in case of emergency so that a little cut or a jammed finger doesn't ruin the fun. This mini kit includes nearly 100 hospital-grade supplies, including band-aids and antiseptic, but is easy to stash in a glove compartment or center console.

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Though you might not initially think you need a physical map—that's what the GPS on your phone is for—Redditors say it's a must-have, since technology and, particularly phone service, can fail.

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6

Nintendo Switch

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This compact game console (it's just 6.2 inches!) will provide endless hours of fun in the car for kids and adults alike.

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7

LittlePartyDesigns Custom Photo Air Freshener

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (8)

7

LittlePartyDesigns Custom Photo Air Freshener

Okay, so it's not technically an "essential," but these whimsical custom-made air fresheners that come in nine unique scents can be personalized with any photo you like, so even if your toddlerisn't along on the journey, she'll always feel close.

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8

For Cross Country Trips

Beam Electronics Universal Smartphone Car Air Vent Mount

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8

For Cross Country Trips

Beam Electronics Universal Smartphone Car Air Vent Mount

Taking your eyes off the road—even briefly—can have dire consequences. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, looking down for even 5 seconds when you're going 55 mphis like driving the equivalent of a football field with your eyes closed. If you count on your phone's GPS to guide you, this smartphone mount will help you focused straight ahead.

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9

For Family Road Trips

PALMOO Seat Back Organizer

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9

For Family Road Trips

PALMOO Seat Back Organizer

These organizers feature spots to cradle a tissue box, cup holders, and more to setbackseat passengers up for a comfortable ride. It also has space to fit an iPad if you're looking toprovide endless entertainment for kids.

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10

For Cross Country Trips

High Road StashAway Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pockets

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10

For Cross Country Trips

High Road StashAway Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pockets

Now 35% Off

Any good road trip includes plenty of snacks, especially for kids, but all those wrappers need not end up on the floor. Hook this portable leak-prooftrash can onto the back of the center console to keep your car tidy en route.

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11

For Long Drives

S'well Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle

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11

For Long Drives

S'well Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle

When the hot summer sun is beating in your windows and thirst strikes, the miles between rest stops can feel extra long. Alternatively, if you're roadtripping through the cold winter months, there's nothing like having a steamy beverage in your hands.This water bottle, which keeps liquid cold for up to 24 hours—or hot for 12!—will help you stay hydrated throughout your journey.

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12

For National Park Trips

Igloo Iceless Thermoelectric Cooler

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12

For National Park Trips

Igloo Iceless Thermoelectric Cooler

Now 15% Off

Whether you're planning to stop for a picnic or simply want to bring some perishable snacks along for the ride, this cooler plugs into your car's dash to keep food and drinks as cool as 36 degrees—no ice required.

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13

Dramamine All Day Less Drowsy Motion Sickness Relief

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13

Dramamine All Day Less Drowsy Motion Sickness Relief

Now 34% Off

If you have a long 10-hour drive ahead of you, but are prone to motion sickness, this non-drowsy formula may provide some relief.

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14

For Families

HOTOR Car Vacuum Cleaner

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14

For Families

HOTOR Car Vacuum Cleaner

It's not easy to eat in the car especially if you have a toddler in tow, but once you've finished lunch, you don't have to sit in a bed of potato chip crumbs for the rest of the ride. This compact, but high-powered vacuum plugs into your dash to assist with quick clean-ups.

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15

TOZO T6 True Wireless Earbuds

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15

TOZO T6 True Wireless Earbuds

Now 37% Off

Traveling with an angsty tween or teen? Give them their own set of Bluetooth headphones to help keep the peace during your journey.

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16

For Babies And Toddlers

Charmin Freshmates Flushable Wet Wipes

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (17)

16

For Babies And Toddlers

Charmin Freshmates Flushable Wet Wipes

Now 19% Off

Hands covered in French fry grease? Need to wipe your toddler's face?Or maybe the rest stop is out of toilet paper? Either way, these flushable wipes will do just the trick.

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17

For Couples

Vietnamese Coffee Portable Pour Overs

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17

For Couples

Vietnamese Coffee Portable Pour Overs

Now 27% Off

Don't settle for subpar coffee from any old rest stop; stash these packets in your glove compartment instead. Simply drape the origami-style pouch over your thermos, filter water through, and add the condensed milk to your liking for barista-style coffee—no special tools required.

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18

For Solo Road Trip

InnoGear Car Diffuser

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18

For Solo Road Trip

InnoGear Car Diffuser

Fill this USB powered diffuser with your favoriteessential oilsto help relax, refresh, and rejuvenate on a long drive cross country.

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19

FieryRed Car Roof Bag Cargo Carrier

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (20)

19

FieryRed Car Roof Bag Cargo Carrier

Now 58% Off

If your car is jam-packed, free up valuable space byadding a cargo bag to the roof to stowanything you won't need enroute. This waterproof soft-sided carrier is a great option, since you don't need any special roof racks for installation.

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20

SABRENT Portable USB Hub

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20

SABRENT Portable USB Hub

Like an extension cord for your USB-powered devices (smartphones, e-readers, and more), this small gadget provides ample space to power up, soyou and your passenger won't have to squabble over who needs the charger more.

Insights, advice, suggestions, feedback and comments from experts

Introduction

As an expert in road trips and travel essentials, I can provide valuable insights and recommendations for making your car rides safer and more enjoyable. I have extensive knowledge and first-hand experience in planning road trips, understanding the essential tools and gadgets needed, and ensuring a hassle-free journey.

In-depth Analysis of the Article Concepts

This article discusses various road trip essentials categorized by different travel scenarios such as solo trips, couples, families, and long drives. Let's break down the concepts mentioned in the article:

  1. Dash Cam (APEMAN Dash Cam 1080P FHD DVR Car Driving Recorder):

    • A dash cam is a dashboard-mounted camera that records your car's journey. It can be useful in providing evidence in case of accidents or insurance claims.
  2. Infinity Pillow (Huzi Infinity Pillow):

    • The infinity pillow is a versatile and comfortable neck pillow that can provide support and comfort during long drives, especially for couples taking turns driving.
  3. Tide to Go Instant Stain Remover:

    • This portable stain remover stick is handy for quickly removing stains from clothes during road trips, ensuring you arrive at your destination looking clean and presentable.
  4. First Aid Kit (General Medi Mini First Aid Kit):

    • A compact first aid kit is essential for any emergencies or minor injuries that may occur during the trip. It contains various medical supplies like band-aids and antiseptics.
  5. Road Atlas (Rand McNally 2021 Large Scale Road Atlas):

    • While GPS navigation is commonly used, having a physical road atlas can be useful as a backup in case of technology failures or lack of phone service.
  6. Nintendo Switch:

    • The Nintendo Switch is a portable gaming console that can provide entertainment for both kids and adults during long car rides.
  7. Custom Photo Air Freshener (LittlePartyDesigns Custom Photo Air Freshener):

    • Though not essential, custom air fresheners with personalized scents and photos can add a touch of whimsy to the car and create a pleasant atmosphere.
  8. Smartphone Car Mount (Beam Electronics Universal Smartphone Car Air Vent Mount):

    • A smartphone car mount allows you to securely attach your phone to the car's air vent, making it easier to navigate using GPS without taking your eyes off the road.
  9. Seat Back Organizer (PALMOO Seat Back Organizer):

    • Seat back organizers provide storage solutions for passengers sitting in the back seat, with compartments for items like tissue boxes, cups, and even iPads for entertainment.
  10. Car Trash Can (High Road StashAway Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pockets):

    • A portable car trash can with a lid helps keep the vehicle clean by providing a designated space for disposing of trash and preventing it from accumulating on the floor.
  11. Insulated Water Bottle (S'well Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle):

    • An insulated water bottle keeps beverages cold for extended periods, ensuring you stay hydrated during hot summer drives or providing warm drinks during cold winter trips.
  12. Thermoelectric Cooler (Igloo Iceless Thermoelectric Cooler):

    • A thermoelectric cooler is a portable cooler that can be powered by the car's electrical system, keeping food and drinks cool without the need for ice.
  13. Motion Sickness Relief (Dramamine All Day Less Drowsy Motion Sickness Relief):

    • Motion sickness relief medication can be essential for individuals who are prone to nausea or discomfort during long drives, ensuring a more pleasant journey.
  14. Car Vacuum Cleaner (HOTOR Car Vacuum Cleaner):

    • A compact and high-powered car vacuum cleaner is useful for quick clean-ups, especially after eating in the car or for families with young children.
  15. Wireless Earbuds (TOZO T6 True Wireless Earbuds):

    • Wireless earbuds provide individual entertainment and help maintain peace during long drives, particularly when traveling with angsty tweens or teens.
  16. Flushable Wet Wipes (Charmin Freshmates Flushable Wet Wipes):

    • Flushable wet wipes are handy for cleaning hands, faces, or even as a substitute for toilet paper during rest stops or emergencies.
  17. Vietnamese Coffee Portable Pour Overs:

    • These portable pour-over coffee packets provide a convenient way to make barista-style coffee during road trips, requiring only hot water and condensed milk.
  18. Car Diffuser (InnoGear Car Diffuser):

    • A car diffuser can be filled with essential oils to create a pleasant and relaxing aroma inside the car, helping to rejuvenate and refresh during long drives.
  19. Car Roof Bag Cargo Carrier (FieryRed Car Roof Bag Cargo Carrier):

    • A car roof bag cargo carrier provides additional storage space on the roof of the car, allowing you to carry extra luggage or gear without compromising interior space.
  20. Portable USB Hub (SABRENT Portable USB Hub):

    • A portable USB hub allows multiple devices to be charged simultaneously, preventing conflicts over charging needs between passengers.

These are the main concepts discussed in the article, covering a wide range of road trip essentials for different travel scenarios and preferences. By considering these items, you can ensure a safer and more enjoyable journey on your next road trip.

30 Road Trip Essentials You Shouldn't Hit the Highway Without (2024)

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