As exciting as it can be to pack up your car and go on a summer road trip, making sure you have everything you need for the trip can be just as much fun as the road trip itself. Here are 9 things you need to make sure you have with you before embarking on your summer road trip!
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Make a List
The best thing you can do is prepare for your trip. Make a list of everything you’ll need before hitting the road so that you don’t have to stop at every gas station and convenience store along your route. That way, when you’re in transit, and not checking out new sites you can make sure you’re getting everything was done that needs to be done while still enjoying yourself! Additionally, check weather reports in advance; sudden storms are hard to plan for if you’re on the road!
Take a Test Drive
Picking out a new car can be an exciting time. It’s a big purchase for many people, and you want to make sure you end up with something that’s right for you. A good idea is to take a test drive. By doing so, you can get a feel for how your car handles on various terrain and also get some seat time before committing to buying it.
Double Check Maintenance
Be sure to double-check your oil levels and tire pressure before hitting the road. It’s also a good idea to replace old wiper blades with new ones for clearer vision in inclement weather. Making small repairs on your car before hitting the road can help you from getting stranded somewhere along your route, which would be inconvenient and expensive. Plus, if you get a flat or run out of gas, you don’t want to be stuck in an unsafe situation far from home.
Pack Relevant Gear and Paperwork
It’s always a good idea to have an emergency kit, spare tire, and other roadside necessities in your car. Before you leave on your trip, make sure you have everything packed and ready to go. While you’re at it, make sure that you grab any documentation—like passports or medical records—that may be necessary while abroad.
Organize the Car
Make sure your car is clean and well-organized. Keep all of your essentials like sunscreen, bug spray, hand sanitizer, small first aid kit, inside a case or bag that you can easily grab when you’re ready to hit the road. It will prevent confusion in an emergency. Also, make sure your car has a full tank of gas! That way, if you get stranded with a dead battery or engine trouble, you won’t be left stranded on unfamiliar turf without any means of transportation. If possible, keep a flashlight and cell phone charger in your car as well.
Prepare Your Passengers
It’s important to talk to your passengers about what they want and expect from a road trip. Some people may not mind that you have no clear destination in mind, while others may have their hearts set on a specific location. Before you start driving, ask your passengers if they are excited or nervous about your trip; it will help everyone feel more at ease if everyone is on board with how things will go. Also, discuss whether it’s OK to take breaks every hour or so during your trip—some people want to make sure that they get there eventually, while others prefer longer periods between stops.
Create Fun Routes in Advance
Use Google Maps to plan out routes beforehand. Not only will you avoid making up your route on the fly, but you’ll also have a visual cue of what parts of your route might be boring and should be avoided in favor of something more interesting. Of course, we don’t know everything about all of America—and as we mentioned earlier, one of these points can probably work for any country.
In Case of Accidents
Be sure to carry a first-aid kit for any car trip — there’s no guarantee you won’t find yourself pulling over to help someone else stranded on the side of the road. Include bandages, gauze pads, and antiseptic wipes in your first-aid kit. Also bring over-the-counter medicines like pain relievers, antihistamines, and cold medicine.
In the worst-case scenario, if road accidents happen, someone with basic medical knowledge can help in an emergency. Document any injuries on paper — it could be helpful in case you need to file a police report or insurance claim later. There’s no harm in talking to a reliable car accident lawyer to look over these documents as well. They are available to advise on your claims settlement process. Make sure everyone is okay and call 911 immediately if anyone needs medical attention.
Car Repair Tools
Make sure you have all of your car repair tools handy before you hit the road. It’s a good idea to have a spare tire, jumper cables, tire changing supplies, and other items in case of emergencies. If you break down or run into another sort of emergency on your trip, these tools can help you get back on track safely and quickly.
Your summer vacation is supposed to be fun, so make sure you have everything you need before you head out of town. With these tips, your road trip will go off without a hitch.