17 Top Road Trip Packing List Essentials & Things To Avoid

Are you looking forward to hitting the road rather than flying to your destination? Then you must make a road trip packing list to ensure you carry every essential thing. Road trips are one of the most fun and adventurous ways of reaching your destination. 

With road-tripping, you can explore the hidden places of a country or city that you can’t while traveling on a plane. Well, all these were the mushy things about road trips. In reality, road trips are highly challenging and inconvenient too. It could be an experience that you will never forget.

Before taking a road trip, always think about the things you actually need when traveling by car. Moving on, If you’re taking a road trip for the first time, you are bound to make mistakes.

But remember not to make the same mistakes next time. The fate of your road trip is based on how well you plan everything. If you don’t have the essential road trip supplies, things can go wrong in no time.

Things To Pack For Road Trip

To save you from such situations, we bring you the ultimate road trip packing list to ensure that your next road adventure is safe and fun. With this list, we also get a list of things not to bring on a trip.

Car Documents

While making your road trip packing list, remember to include the car documents. Without them, your road trip might turn into a nightmare. The car documents must include driving licenses, papers, insurance coverage, etc. If you’re on an international trip, ensure the necessary permissions. These documents can save you from any problems relating to travel or a car.

Portable Charger

Always carry a portable charger if you’re taking a road trip or a flight to your destination. It can be utterly helpful in situations where there are no charging facilities. With a portable charger, you’ll not have to worry about your phone’s dying battery. Always ensure to have it on your road trip packing list.

Cell Phone Holder

The laws regarding talking over the phone while driving are becoming stricter with each passing day. Not only that but the penalty has also been increased to unexpected strata. Opt for a reliable cell phone holder to avoid such penalties while going on a road trip. It comes in handy while looking for directions on Google maps and playing music.

Travel Trash Can

When you’re on a road trip, it is natural for you and your friends or family to have snacks and soft drinks in the car. But sooner or later, all of this will convert into a bag full of trash. One of the best ways to manage this trash is to carry a travel trash can. When not in use, you can collapse it. Remember to keep it as a priority while making your road trip packing list.

First Aid Kit

Ensure to carry a first aid box with all the essential medicines and supplies that could be of help while you’re on the road. A first aid kit is the most critical part of your road trip packing list, as there are chances of encountering backaches while driving for long hours.

Travel Insurance

If you’re about to go on a long road trip across the country or overseas, you must buy road trip travel insurance. Opting for insurance will save you from unforeseen situations and cover your expenses.

Hand Sanitizer

If you’re traveling during the time of COVID – 19, you should not forget to add hand sanitizer to your road trip packing list. It is one of the best things to keep you safe from deadly viruses and keep your hands clean after using the loo or changing diapers. 

Cooler and Ice bags

Before taking a road trip, you must know that fewer food options are available. Mainly you’ll have to be dependent on fast food. Always carry your snacks as they are much more affordable. In order to keep your snack and drinks in good condition, you’ll need a cooler.

Water Container 

It is expensive and difficult to find water on the road trip. So, always remember to add a water container to your road trip packing list. It can come in handy while refilling water bottles and cleaning supplies.

Car Trunk Organizer

One of the best ways to keep everything organized in your car is to use a car trunk organizer. These trunk organizers come with various compartments and are perfect for keeping your clothes, shoes, and other things.

Mosquito Repellent

While on a road trip, be ready to face various challenges, one of which is deadly mosquitos. They have the power to ruin your much-anticipated road trip. To keep them away, use mosquito repellent, and enjoy your trip.

Air Mattress

If camping is on your cards while taking a road trip, you must add an air mattress to your packing list. With this, you’ll not have to worry about beauty sleep while traveling the world.

Day Pack 

No matter what trip you take, a day pack is a must to make your trip comfortable and carry all your essentials in one bag. A day pack can have snacks, sunscreen, a dry towel, etc.


A road trip might be an excellent idea for you, but not for your skin. It is a must to add sunscreen to your road trip packing list. Temperatures are pretty high at noon, so always carry sunscreen and save your skin from harmful sun rays.

Car Emergency Kit

Have you ever thought about what you’ll do if your car breaks down on an empty highway? It could be a draining experience, for sure. Always carry an emergency kit to face such situations and fix your car. This kit must consist of essential tools, a repair kit, an LED torch, etc.

Neck Pillow

Who doesn’t love sleeping in the car? Those jerks on the road just don’t let your neck stay in a place. Well, you can get rid of it by using a neck pillow and making your ride comfortable. So, remember to add a neck pillow to your road trip packing list for a smooth ride.


A VPN will be handy when using Wi-Fi at public places like hostels, hotels, and cafes when you’re on a road trip to a foreign country. A VPN will ensure that your cell phone and laptop are safe from potential hackers. With a VPN, you’ll be able to access several sites that could be blocked in your country.

Also read: Can You Get A Refund On Your Travel Fund

What NOT To Take On A Road Trip


Do we have to explain anything about this? We all know drugs are illegal, and putting them on your road trip packing list will lead to big trouble.

Hard Shell Suitcases

Suitcases take up much more space in cars when compared to day packs or duffel bags. Avoid carrying hardshell suitcases if you wish for more space in your vehicle.

Unprepared Snacks 

Avoid carrying any snack that needs to be cut or prepared. It is advisable to bring snacks that are ready to eat, like fast food, protein bars, etc.

Expensive Clothing or Jewellery

Road trips are as risky as they are fun. There are higher chances of getting robbed on a road trip. So, leave all your valuables like gold or everyday wear jewelry at your home and keep them from your road trip packing list.

Which car would be suitable for a road trip?

There is no need to pick a particular car for a road trip. Any vehicle would work. All you need to do is get it checked properly at the service center.

How to pick a specific destination?

If you still need clarification regarding your destination, consider taking help from websites like Roadtrippers, Waze, Gasbuddy, etc.

How to take shower?

The best place to shower is the hotel or hostel where you’re staying. If that’s not possible, find a clean stream and take a dip into it.

What is the cost of a road trip?

The cost of a road trip differs depending on the time, length of your journey, and destination. You can get the estimated price of petrol or gas by looking at the distance on Google maps and then calculating the amount. Once you’ve derived your petrol price, add the accommodation charges according to your budget. After this, you’ll arrive at your entire estimated cost.

Why opt for a road trip?

It is an enjoyable living experience. This journey becomes much more exciting when you’re with your friends or family. It would be an excellent time for all of you to bond and add life to your relationships. If this is a solo trip, you’ll have the time to discover yourself, meet new people, and learn about their culture and lifestyle.

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