Must Have Road Trip Essentials List

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Are you preparing for a long road trip and aren’t sure what to bring?

Don’t worry; we’ve been on hundreds of road trips, including a few cross-country tours! And with that experience, we’ve learned what the must-have road trip essentials are.

Here are the road trip essentials you should pack on every trip, plus some extra things you might want to bring depending on how long your trip is and where you’re going.

Let’s dive in!

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Basic Road Trip Essentials

Before we get into the nitty gritty, these are the things you should have on you (or in your vehicle) at all times.

1. License & Registration

These are pretty self explanatory – your drivers license proves that you are licensed to drive and your vehicle registration proves that you own the vehicle you’re traveling in.

When/if you’re pulled over, these are the two things you’re asked for right off the bat. For that reason alone, these two things are basic road trip essentials!

2. Car & Travel Insurance

Anything could happen while you’re on the road traveling. Accidents happen and you need to be prepared for them in case they do!

Chances are, you already have car insurance. It’s typically mandatory to have car insurance to drive in the USA and Canada (among other countries).

Travel insurance, however, you might not have yet. It’s designed to protect you against risks and financial losses that could happen while traveling (ranging anywhere from lost luggage to an illness).

3. Spare Tire

Spare tires are a must have when you plan on going on a road trip. You never know when one of your tires might blow and keeping a spare on hand will keep you going until you reach a repair shop.

4. Maps

Whether you grab a paper map or you download an app like Maps.Me, this is a basic essential that you shouldn’t forget.

You won’t have cell service everywhere after all! If paper maps aren’t your thing, Maps.Me is a free app that can be used offline without cell service and acts as a GPS.

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The MUST-HAVE Road Trip Essentials

While we recommend bringing everything we have in this guide, these are the top 5 things that you should not leave without.

Whether you’re driving to Mexico or just a few states away, these essentials will come in handy.

Road Trip Essentials for the Car

While these aren’t in the top 5 must-have list, these are pretty basic essentials you should have in your car at all times (even if you’re not going on a road trip). We also recommend you have them in any RV or camper at all times!

Winter Road Trip Essentials

Planning a road trip in the winter? Don’t get stuck without these essentials in your car!

Toiletry Road Trip Essentials

Cooking/Food Road Trip Essentials

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Basic Road Trip Essentials

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We hope our list inspired you to plan a vacation sometime in the near future! What are your go to road trip essentials? Let us know in the comments below!

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