If there’s one thing that thousands of Americans are going to want to do over their summer vacations this year, it will be to get out of the house. Visiting the park and going to the grocery store just no longer cut it for most people. Fortunately, there’s nothing quite like hitting the open road for a trip with friends or family. Before you head out, however, you’ll want to make sure to pack everything you need. Here’s a useful road-trip checklist to help keep you prepared for just about anything.
Even if you are the best driver out of the group, there’s still a chance that a traffic violation or an accident occurs. The first items that a police officer will request (after pulling you over) are your driver’s license and vehicle registration. Keep the license on your person and the registration in a storage space that is easily accessible (like the glovebox). For accidents, you will need to provide auto insurance information with any other drivers involved. Store your insurance policy alongside the vehicle registration so that all the essential paperwork is kept in one place.
Manuals, Maps, and Travel Guides
Speaking of paper, it’s always good to have physical copies of your vehicle’s owner manual, area maps, and travel guides just in case you find yourself in a dead zone. An owner’s manual really comes in handy when one of the obnoxious lights flashes on the dashboard. Instead of guessing between needing an oil change or having low tire pressure, you can look to the manual for pictures and descriptions of each symbol. Maps are crucial for when your GPS gets stuck recalculating for hours on end. Not sure where you are? Stop and check a map for recognizable landmarks or a nearby highway. Lastly, travel guides are jam-packed with helpful information like which hotels to stay in, where to eat, and all of the pit stops you should make for a memorable trip.
Leaving home with nothing but the clothes on your back? Hopefully that’s not the case! When packing, it’s essential that you bring a new change of clothes for each day that you will be gone. That means bringing multiple pairs of underwear, socks, shorts, shirts, and so on. You’ll even want a jacket with a hood for rainy days and chilly nights. Try planning your wardrobe specifically for the environment that you will be in. If the trip ends at a campsite, you’ll want to bring pants and a long-sleeved shirt. Hitting up a water park? Don’t forget swimsuits.
There’s nothing wrong with providing passengers with a little screen time to keep them busy while you focus on driving. You can’t go wrong in bringing a portable car charger to power laptops, cell phones, and tablets. Don’t want the kids to be watching movies and playing video games the entire time? Have them use their devices for fun, educational moments, too. They can research historical facts about the cities/towns you’re traveling through or monuments that you all might see along the way.
Snacks and Drinks
It’s not really a road trip without snacks and drinks like homemade sandwiches, chips, trail mix, fruit juice, or bottled water. Make room for a cooler or two to store all of the items that need to be kept cold and pack them with ice before you head out. Not only will this save you money from avoiding fast food restaurants, but it will also give you an excuse to make a few of those pit stops you want to check out.
When you have a particular destination in mind, and limited time to get there, you may find your group taking shifts to drive through the night. That’s when packing toiletries like toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, towels, deodorant, and more comes in clutch. There are plenty of rest stops out there that provide showers for hardworking truckers that you can also utilize. When traveling with several other people in a tight space, it’s not wise to disregard personal hygiene.
An Emergency Toolkit
You never know when you might find yourself stuck in the middle of nowhere – so travel prepared with an emergency toolkit. This can be stuffed with flashlights, pocket knives, window breakers, first aid equipment, jumper cables, tape, and road flares. The list of equipment you can bring is endless but all of these tools have distinct jobs that they can perform. If you run out of gas, for example, there’s only one piece of equipment that can get you back on the road – a gas can.
A Spare Gas Can with an EZ-POUR® Spout
That sign back there really did mean that it was the last stop for 100 miles, so what are you to do when you run out of gasoline? If you brought a spare gas can, you just have to catch a ride and head to the nearest gas station. You could also call for roadside assistance but only if there is reliable cell phone service in the area. Luckily for those who also packed their EZ-POUR® spout, fueling back up will take no time at all.
Need to fill up a boat or ATV as well? These spouts can fit on just about every can that holds fuel and their flexible nozzles will reach even the most difficult of engines. Each one also comes with a cap and push-in vent to prevent spills and leaks from occurring.
Get Packed and Head Out!
After checking off all of these items for a road trip, it’s time to head out on an adventure that you’ll certainly remember for the rest of your life. Don’t have an EZ-POUR® spout just yet? Buy yours online at ezpourspout.com.