Road trip season is here! Part of preparing for your trip is thinking about new car gadgets and important accessories to take with you.
Below we’ve compiled a list of 14 essential items to take on the road.
Long before heading out, consider looking into vehicle service plans (also known as extended car warranties) to save money on major repairs that can come up over time. The best kind of plans can provide you with roadside assistance and discounts during your road trips too! Get an extended car warranty quote to see if it’s worth it for you to invest in one.
1. Car first aid kit
You can buy a complete first aid kit or make one yourself. Ideally, you want to find a box or bag that doesn’t take too much space but is big enough to keep your items organized and easy to access. Some important items include:
- Allergy medication
- Antiseptic wipes
- Eye wash
- Medical tape
- Pain reliever, like Advil or Tylenol
- Sterile Bandages
- Topical antibiotic ointment, like Neosporin
2. Car hand sanitizer dispenser
Hand sanitizer is a must-have. The COVID-19 pandemic is still not over. You can just buy several bottles of hand sanitizer and keep them around your car, but having a hand sanitizer dispenser is a great option. First, it’s affordable. Second, it fits into your car’s cup holder for easy access. Third, it encourages you to use it every time you get in the car.
Read our recent blog if you’re still considering where to road trip this spring 2021.
3. Car seat belt cutter and window glass breaker
There are compact 2-in-1 tools available that can let you cut a jammed seat belt and break a side window. Some of them are very small and can even attach to your keychain. In case of an emergency, you should have a tool that’s simple to use, not too heavy and always within reach.
4. Car phone mount
When you’re driving in an area you don’t really know (and your co-pilot has conveniently fallen asleep), you’ll need a hands-free way to see the navigation map on your phone. No matter what car you have, you can find a good phone mount that’s affordable. You can install one that stays permanently on or get one that simply attaches to your air vents.
Note: Before you buy a phone mount for your car, check the local laws. Some cities and states have banned windshield mounts or have specific rules as to where to mount them.
5. Car charger/power inverter
Most new cars today come with USB ports for you to charge your mobile devices. However, these simple USB ports don’t have enough power for bigger accessories. Power inverters can help you charge your bigger electronics like a laptop, camera or coffee maker by converting electricity from direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC) power.
6. Tire pressure monitor
Some newer cars come standard with a tire pressure monitor, but if your car is older you may not have one. Knowing if your tire is over- or under- inflated is important to make sure your car’s performance is optimal during your road trip (eg. You’re getting good fuel economy). Tire pressure monitoring devices are placed in the cigarette lighter socket and connect to your tire sensors.
7. Mini tire inflator/compressor
In case you get a low or flat tire while on the road, it’s a good idea to have a mini tire inflator handy. It can help you get back quickly on the road and to a service station if necessary. They’re affordable and can connect either to your cigarette lighter socket or directly to your battery.
8. Electric car portable charger
Cars that have a traditional internal-combustion engine can be helped by roadside assistance vehicles, which carry gasoline. But if you have an electric car and have miscalculated how far the closest charging station is, you can be in big trouble. An EV portable charger can charge up your car quickly and let you continue on to your next destination.
9. Car battery jump start
Anything can happen during a road trip and a dead battery is one of the most common and most annoying occurrences. If there are no other cars near you, you’re going to have to sit around waiting for help. A jump starter pack can power your car battery easily and let you start your car back up again. It can be easily recharged for a later use through your USB port.
10. Radar detector
You should always drive the speed limit, but let’s face it: when we’re out on the open road with no one else around, we have a tendency to speed. A radar is a good reminder of how fast you’re going and a good way to avoid a big fine. There are radars available for any budget.
11. Car cooler and warmer
On a hot day, staying hydrated with cold water makes a huge difference. In the winter, a nice cup of hot tea can help you prevent a cold. Getting a car cooler and warmer takes your road trip to the next level, and it doesn’t necessarily have to take up too much room. There are plenty available that are small and can sit comfortably in the middle of the back seat.
12. Coffee maker
Big coffee drinkers will enjoy saving money by having a coffee maker in the car. It’s also great to make coffee your way and not pay money for terrible coffee at a service station. You can get a manually-operated coffee maker or an electric one you can plug into a power inverter.
13. Car mattress
Road trips are exhausting and even if you have hotels and camping sites where you’ve already planned on staying the night, sometimes you’ll have to rest a little bit in the car. For this reason, a car mattress is perfect. You can inflate it and place it in the back seat area of your car and nap comfortably. It also won’t take up too much room in your trunk once deflated.
14. Car rooftop cargo bag
Not as heavy as a rooftop cargo box, a cargo bag can carry up to 15 cubic feet of space. It can help you to store things for the trip and stay more organized. These bags are waterproof and can protect your stuff from grit, sun, rain and wind. When you’re not using it, you can simply fold it up and put it away without much work.
Vehicle Repair Protection protects you from expensive bills
A vehicle service plan like Vehicle Repair Protection can protect you from paying a huge repair bill during your trip, or after it ends. It’s a low-cost monthly subscription that comes with free perks like 24-hour roadside assistance and car rental reimbursement. Be sure to look into getting a VRP subscription well ahead of your trip. There is a waiting period of one month before your coverage kicks in.
Uproar.car has created vehicle breakdown coverage that is simple, trustworthy and affordable. Transforming the extended car warranties marketplace through technology and transparency, Uproar.car offers a full suite of worry-free, no haggle car care plans through low-cost, 100% online, monthly subscriptions that drivers can sign up for in less than five minutes. Get an instant quote today!