Planning a week-long road trip soon? If so, this checklist should prepare you for everything from the ever-so-important first aid kit to camping essentials, must-bring gadgets, or what meals or drinks are ideal if you plan to bring food with you.
PAPERWORK & OTHER VEHICLE-RELATED ESSENTIALS
- Your Driver’s License
- Car Registration, Insurance Info, and car manual.
- Toll pass
- Paper map. It’s still better to have both old-school and your phone’s talking map.
- Spare tire, flashlight and multi-tool.
- Roadside Assistance plan (like AAA or numbers to your go-to provider)
- Emergency Fuel, Oil, and water. Having spare of these ready (and kept in a safe place) is important. You have no idea how many times roadtrippers fail at estimating if their current gas could reach the next gas station.
- Snow chains or shovels. If you’re traveling during winter, these tools are very useful.
HEALTH, HYGIENE, AND SAFETY
- First Aid Kit. You can buy this already compiled and organized for you. Make sure to include your own medicine and prescriptions. If you’re taking birth control pills, pack them into the first aid kit as well.
- Gum or mints. If someone in your group is feeling nauseous from the ride, candies usually help. If not, some of your meds should do the trick.
- Toilet paper and tissues.
- Lip balm. This is particularly important if you’re traveling in cold weather.
- Toothpaste and toothbrush.
- Baby wipes, bug spray.
- Lotion and sunscreen. Make sure to use sunscreen if you plan to hike, swim, or be exposed to the sun.
- Alcohol and hand sanitizers. These are important for keeping germs at bay, especially if you’re in a location without running water available to clean your hands.
- Garbage bag. Don’t leave behind trash if you plan to go camping or hiking. Having a garbage bag ready ensures you get to bring food wrappers and other waste with you to the vehicle.
- Sleeping bag and tent. Make sure everyone fits in the tent that you bring.
- Portable grill/cooking equipment. Aside from bringing lighter or matches to start your bonfire, you can also bring a portable stove or oven for safer and quicker cooking in the Great Outdoors.
- Kitchen basics. Don’t forget your utensils, pots or pans, food containers, can openers, corkscrew, and other important tools you might need for cooking, eating, and organizing your food.
- Solar-powered light and/or fan. You don’t have to use fire to light up the camping spot. A solar-powered light is a LOT safer and quicker to use.
- Clothes. Bring as many extra clothes as you want or need.
- Raincoat and boots. You never know when it will rain (and when you decide to play in the rain).
- Proper shoes. You can keep wearing your flip-flops inside the RV or in the tent. If you’re planning on hiking, make sure you wear hiking boots. If you’re
- Laundry bag. This ensures your clean clothes don’t get mixed up with your used clothes.
- Towels and blankets. One keeps you dry, and the other keeps you warm.
- Hat, sunglasses, scarf, and other items of clothing that you can never live without.
- Power inverter and Car phone charger. It’s almost a guarantee that you’ll be charging from the vehicle. Make sure you are equipped to do so by bringing them with you.
- Powerbank. If you’re going to spend more time outdoors than in your vehicle, a power bank could help you extend your camera or phone’s life. You can even plug in rechargeable lamps here.
- Camera. For those who are old school, a camera is still a better choice for picture-taking (when compared to your smartphone).
- Mp3 player, portable speakers, or your phone with Spotify. It doesn’t matter if you’re old school or new school. If you want music to be included in your trip, make sure you pack your mp3 player and portable speakers with you.
- Refillable water bottle. Having one beside you at all times reduces your chances of being dehydrated.
- Cooler. If you plan to bring meat, your cooler should be able to keep your meat cool and unspoiled by heat.
- Snacks. If you’re traveling with kids, I’m sure you already know how important easy-to-access snacks are. Place snacks in zip-lock bags to keep them fresh when not being munched on.
- Must-Haves. Bring your coffee, creamer, power bars, energy drinks, and other food or drinks that you cannot find in the middle of nowhere.
These are just the tip of the iceberg. If you’re a bookworm like me, I’m sure you’ll be bringing a book or two for the ride. Other things like game boards for the kids, stuffed toys for your toddler, fishing equipment, etc. can also be included in this list.
Do note that if you’re not going to bring your own vehicle for this week-long trip, the items above may not be feasible. This checklist was written for those traveling in their RVs or cars.