Road Trip Essentials

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Road Trip Essentials

road trip essentials

As many of you know, I love a good road trip and have been day-dreaming about them a lot lately!  I even made a US Road Trip Wish List last week.  Kaleb and I moved back from Michigan to Tennessee this week and it got me thinking about what’s important on a road trip.  Eight hours in a truck gets you thinking about a lot of things!

Music

I think music is an obvious must for any road trip.  The radio in our truck actually doesn’t work so Pandora was amazing for us!  We used it for the whole 8 hour trip and it surprisingly didn’t use much of the data on our phone.  We also love listening to the Stand Up Comedy stations on Pandora – we actually listened to that more than music, but you get the idea!

Snacks

Food is right up there in terms of importance with music.  I’m a big snacker and it keeps me from getting sleepy.  Maybe not so great on my diet, but helps me not get bored and wreck and kill us so I’d say its worth it.

I personally love Gummy Bears and Sour Gummy Worms for car rides.  So yummy!

Coffee

This needs no extra explanation.  I survive on coffee sans road trips so I need even more when driving for long periods of time.

GPS

We like using Google Maps on our phones and don’t own an actual GPS.  I feel like GPS devices have become a bit outdated since you can easily access current maps on smartphones and devices have to be constantly updated.

Recorder

For some reason I always come up with my best ideas (I say that like I’m a genius or something) while I’m driving (or in the shower) so basically anytime I can’t actually write them down.  Since realizing this, I’ve started using the recorder on my phone to record my brilliant ideas for later use.

Flashlight

I always carry the large Maglite in my car because it not only is a flashlight but it comes in handy as a good weapon if you ever feel threatened by someone.

Phone Charger

I think it’s important to never let your phone die when you’re traveling.  You never know when you are going to have an emergency or need directions, so a phone charger is a must.

Power Converter

If you live on your computer like me, a day or days on the road can really set you back on work.  Having a power converter can be amazing!

Sunglasses

I always forget sunglasses and I’m always kicking myself in the ass for forgetting them!  Even if it’s not sunny when you first start out, it will at some point get sunny.  If only for the pure fact to rub it in your face that you forget them!

Camera

My camera goes with me everywhere but it’s pretty much in my lap for the entire road trip.  There are so many great photo ops when traveling by car!  And, don’t forget an extra camera battery!

Travel Apps

Don’t forget to use your favorite travel apps while road-tripping!  TripAdvisor, Yonder, and Trover are all great ones but there are so many travel apps out there that the possibilities are endless!

Blankets & Pillows

If you’re doing a long trip and switching off driving, it’s important you get your rest while the other person is driving.  I always take a pillow and blanket with me on road trips.  I also take a blanket because Kaleb freezes me out and I will be incredibly miserable if I don’t have one.

Gas Can, Jack and Fix-a-Flat

Always be prepared for the worst situations!  I’ve never run out of gas which is absolutely amazing since I’m the queen of pushing my limits on empty.

 What are your road trip essentials?

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Ashley is the mastermind behind A Southern Gypsy, a travel blog focused adventure, outdoors, wildlife and Vegan food! In between bigger trips, she is delivering the best of her hometown, Nashville. Hates mustard & pickles. Needs coffee to function. Other passions | activism, minimalism, zero waste, books + writing.

10 Comments

  1. Holly

    January 22, 2015 at 10:49 PM

    Great tip on the recorder! I never would have thought of that. I do all of my best thinking while driving. 🙂

  2. Ryan Biddulph

    January 23, 2015 at 10:54 AM

    Great tips Ashley and amen on Pandora! What a wonderful service for tuning into a wide range of music. Love it and I see it vibing perfectly with a road trip. Gummy bears do rock 😉

    Thanks for sharing!

    Ryan

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  4. Michele {Malaysian Meanders}

    January 23, 2015 at 11:01 PM

    When I read “recorder”, I thought you meant the musical instrument. I was thinking wow, that must make for an interesting trip. So glad to know that I misunderstood. Ha ha. I remember once when our radio broke right before a roadtrip in the pre-iPod/iPhone era. I thought I was going to DIE with all that silence. And you have excellent taste in Road Trip snacks.

  5. Brittany @ Paws for Beer

    January 24, 2015 at 3:44 AM

    I have a GPS for my car and it always leads me astray… sometimes to the point that it’s unforgivable 🙂

  6. Ruth

    January 25, 2015 at 12:43 AM

    Just in time when I a am planning my next road trip! I also take a small ice chest full of beverages. Saves money and you are always prepared to quench your thirst.

  7. Lauren

    January 30, 2015 at 6:08 PM

    Great tips! These are all definitely essential. The worst is when I only brought a handful of CDs with me on the last road trip and we listened to them all…then, we didn’t know what to listen to! For those situations, I wish I still had satellite radio!

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  9. Todd @ Visit50

    July 11, 2015 at 11:22 AM

    Another tip for music – get an auxiliary adapter so you can listen to music from your phone, through the car speakers. Most of my road trips are in rental cars, so this can be very helpful

    Details – It’s a male to male aux plug. I got mine at a rest stop for $6

    Note, if you have Bluetooth connection or USB connection you won’t need this.

  10. Selene

    January 11, 2017 at 3:21 PM

    Wow, awesome tips! Thank you for sharing, these are some great ideas!

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