Top 10 Road Trip Essentials 1

Top 10 Road Trip Essentials

Spring is almost here and that means everybody is getting out and traveling! My favorite thing to do in the Spring is go on road trips! Now, if you’ve never been on or planned a road trip before, planning a road trip can be as frustrating as it can be fun! These are the top 10 essentials that I need for every road trip I go on, no matter what the distance you’re covering!

Top 10 Road Trip Essentials 2

A Bomb Playlist


I don’t know how Courtney feels, but for me, a bomb playlist is the heart of a good road trip. Having a good playlist on a road trip can make a 10 hour drive feel like 5. I’ve made a few road trip playlists in my time but I’ve recently combined all my best picks into a pretty darn good playlist (if I do say so myself)


Car Charger


You definitely don’t want your phone to run out of juice while you’re in the middle of nowhere. Having a car charger is a great idea in general, and most people have them in their cars already. However, most people rent cars for road trips to avoid putting miles on their own cars so this essential is more of a reminder for those people.




Snacks are a no brainer when you’re on a road trip, but not all snacks are car friendly! Make sure all your snacks have a resealable bag (and if they don’t, put them in ziplocs before you leave). Also, if you’re going to have a cooler in the car with you, freeze 3-4 water bottles beforehand and you won’t have the water mess from using ice! I can tell you firsthand that having a leaky cooler and not knowing it isn’t fun!!


Atlas or Map


This is something that my dad and grandfather drilled into my head when I was younger. They always had the US Atlases somewhere in the car when I was growing up. Even now I’d like to think that if my dad were still here that he would have a copy of the 2019 US Atlas under his drivers seat. Keeping an atlas or a map in your car is a good idea for those times that you don’t have cell reception or satellite coverage. It’ll keep you on route to your destination without any issues!


Aux Cord


Again, most people already have these in their car, but if you’re renting instead of driving your own car, aux cords aren’t part of the deal. Most newer cars have bluetooth and you won’t need this essential, but it serves as a nice reminder.


Easily Accessible Change of Clothes


I know you’re thinking that this tip is crazy. It really isn’t though. If you have the trunk completely packed and you need an extra shirt, or you’ve stepped in a huge puddle (or gum). How long is it going to take you to unpack the trunk, dig around in your suitcase, and find what you’re looking for? That’s why I always put a big enough bag for a complete change of clothes in the backseat floorboards!


Loose Change/ Cash


You don’t know how many times I’ve come across a toll road and had no money on me. Keeping a few bucks in your wallet will really help you out just in case you happen on a toll road somewhere on your journey. (tip: an empty m&m mini tube will hold around a roll of quarters)




Another one that seems like a no brainer, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve left the house (going on a road trip) without my sunglasses! Then you have to either turn around or buy another pair when you get to a point that has civilization and sunglasses aren’t cheap anymore!


Blanket and Pillow


Having a blanket and pillow on a road trip (especially a long one) is a must! Even if your pillow is one of those little travel neck ones, something is better than nothing when you want to take a nap!!




Having headphones is another must for when you just need a little while to yourself (or if you get a phone call and need to hear). You can listen to your own music or even pop in an audiobook! Plus, headphones are nice to have on your trip in general.



If you’re not sure where to get started in planning your own road trip, be sure to check out our posts on Planning a Road Trip and Spring Break Essentials.


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