Essential things needed for Road Trips

Essential Gear Checklist: Road Trips

July 2024 by couponlab

Who doesn’t love a good road trip? As summer approaches, the bloggers at CouponLab are itching to string together a good cross-country trek. Whether you’re migrating south for the winter or leaving the place you’ve known as “home” in the rearview for a new one, a proper road trip requires smart planning and packing. That isn’t to say that impromptu trips are always doomed, just a little riskier, if that’s your thing.

Essential things needed for Road Trips

Destination planning

First and most obviously, you’ll want to get your overnight destinations laid out as accurately as possible. This step involves estimating your gas tank’s range, driving time, and personal stamina. The longer your trip gets, the harder this math becomes. When all’s said and done, these painful moments of algebra are more than worth the feeling of security for yourself, your passengers, and your things during the nights of needed rest.

Safety and security

Plan destinations till you’re blue in the face, sh*t still happens. Outside the walls of your home and familiarity of your hometown, you become infinitely more vulnerable to those most desperate, whatever the case. Never leave valuables in plain sight, park underneath light poles and near entrances, and be mindful about your surroundings at all times.

In-car entertainment

On a lighter note, you will absolutely need to be entertained! Be sure to lock-in a preferred streaming service, set with multiple playlists. Playlists should cover a range of moods, climates, regions, times of day, any and everything. Most importantly, take time to compile physical music, too, whether on CDs or stored locally on devices. The abrupt silence caused by spotty wireless service can be deafening.

Of course, there are a number of tactile items that help to ensure a safe and enjoyable road trip. Mostly on the In case of emergency side of things, the majority are good to keep in your car year-round, as well. Finally, it wouldn’t be a Couponlab blog if we didn’t also link to places where you can save money on these items.


Plan all you want, electronics die and cell service has a knack for bailing in the most dire of times. Never leave the driveway on an extended journey without a detailed atlas or roadmap covering Point A, Point B, and everything in between.


Depending on the length of your road trip, it’s likely you’ll experience a variety of climates. A blanket or two from home ensures warmth in case of emergency and gives the cabin a homey comfort for when the nights get long or traffic gets angsty.

External power

The hefty battery in your car will die surprisingly fast after a vehicle runs out of gas. It’s always a good bet to keep a charged power bank available, road trip or not.

Jumper cables

In a world where the friendly stranger is an endangered animal, asking “Hey, can I jump my car?” while holding your own ready-to-rock cables, is more likely to be agreed to than, “Hey, can I jump my car… and, do you have jumper cables?”.


Food and drink are left up to the individuals partaking, but a backseat cooler changes the game. There’s something about a fresh chilled sandwich on the road that makes a person glad to be alive.

Extra gas

As the saying goes, every person knows their gas tank and how far they can push the limit on that blinking orange light. Better to not take the chance when traveling through new places. This goes double if you slacked on the math assignment mentioned earlier.

First Aid

A simple med-kit should be in the trunk anyhow, but a road trip and the packing, unpacking, adventuring, and small spaces that come with the territory make for a deceivingly dangerous foray. Besides the apparent danger of traveling at high speed on the freeway, jamming one’s hand into the crack between the seats for a just-out-of-reach anything can be a daunting task for anyone’s fingers.