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All My Road Trip Essentials – My Perfect Road Trip Bag

Planning a road trip? Don’t forget these road trip essentials.

If you’ve been following our blog, you know that we love road trips! Today, I’m sharing what I put in my perfect road trip bag. I like to travel light and pack as minimal as possible, and these are my road trip essentials.

My Perfect Road Trip Bag - All My Road Trip Essentials.

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Last Updated: March 3, 2024

All My Road Trip Essentials

  1. Bag / Day Pack – this one is super lightweight and holds everything I need.
  2. Kindle – I still have this one with the keyboard, but we’re giving away kindle fires! :)
  3. Mobile System by Peak Design – love using the wallet, car vent mount, and mobile creator kit.
  4. Spotify Premium – We pay for it year-round now, but before, I used to activate it for the months we did at least two road trips.
  5. Water Bottle – Been using this 32 oz insulated bottle or this, which folds up nicely or lays flat in a side pocket.
  6. Car Cup Holder Expander – we use these expandable cup holders. Before, we used to let our water bottles roll around on the floor, which was somewhat annoying. Now we can use cups and bottles of various sizes. It’s easy to lock in, and it has a slot for mug handles.
  7. Camera – I always bring my R5 with a wide and long lens.
  8. Hand Sanitizer – We leave a bottle in our car.
  9. Sunscreen – It’s important to wear when you’re sitting in the car for a long time. The sun still hits you!
  10. Sunhat – I use either this (better for hiking) or this (for everything else).
  11. Sunglasses – I like these because they’re my day-to-day glasses but have a magnetic add-on for sunglasses!
  12. Seat Wrap and Transition Towel – This thing is part seat wrap, part changing towel, and I’ve used it as a blanket.
  13. Snacks – our full post on our favorite road trip snacks.
  14. Travel John – Sometimes bathrooms are hard to find. I stash a few of these in the car for those emergencies when I have to pee but can’t find a place to do it.
  15. Road Atlas – We typically rely on our phones with offline Google Maps for no-signal areas, but sometimes we like having a physical map.

See More: 21 Car Camping Essentials – Everything You Need to Pack

expandable cup holderPin

More Road Trip Essentials

  • Laptop – For longer trips where we have to work on photos and write blog posts.
  • Portable Air Compressor – In case you need to inflate your tires. It takes the stress out of finding a place to do that.
  • Car Emergency Kit – You never plan for something bad to happen, but it’s good to be prepared.
  • First Aid Kit – We always have one handy in the car.
  • Head Lamp – Good to have after it gets dark.
  • Leatherman – It’s nice to have a knife and tools in case you need it.
  • Cooler – Especially for warmer destinations.
  • Additional Rooftop Storage – If you plan on bringing a lot of stuff or sleeping in the car.
  • Sunshades – Helps keep the car cooler.
  • Rocky Talkies – If you are caravaning, this is a great way to keep in touch with other cars without worrying about cell service.

See More: 21 Best Road Trips in USA to Put on Your Bucket List


Tips for Road Tripping

  1. Plan your route. This will help you avoid traffic jams and make the most of your time. Use a map or GPS to get a general idea of the route you want to take, and then research specific points of interest along the way. This will help you make stops that are interesting and enjoyable for everyone in the car.
  2. Pack snacks and drinks. This will help you save money and avoid unhealthy food choices on the road. Pack a variety of snacks that everyone will enjoy, such as fruits, vegetables, crackers, and granola bars. And don’t forget to pack plenty of water!
  3. Take breaks often. This will help you avoid fatigue and accidents. Get out of the car and stretch your legs every two hours or so. And if you’re driving for more than six hours, take a longer break to eat a meal and rest.
  4. Bring entertainment. This will help you keep yourself and your passengers entertained during long stretches of road. Bring a variety of entertainment options, such as audiobooks, games, music, and movies.
  5. Be patient. Road trips can be unpredictable, so it’s important to be patient. Don’t let traffic jams or unexpected detours get you down. Just relax and enjoy the ride.
  6. Be safe. Always follow the rules of the road and be aware of your surroundings.
  7. Have fun! Road trips are a great way to explore new places and create lasting memories. So relax, enjoy the ride, and make the most of your adventure.

Planning Checklist

What are some of your road trip essentials?

Esther and JacobPin

Esther + Jacob

Esther and Jacob are the founders of Local Adventurer, one of the top 5 travel blogs in the US. They believe that adventure can be found near and far and hope to inspire others to explore locally. They explore a new city in depth every year and currently base themselves in Las Vegas.

Follow on Instagram (E + J), YouTube, TikTok, and Pinterest.

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