There are so many road trip packing lists out there that it can be overwhelming! When it comes down to it, your list is going to vary based on your destination, itinerary, and personal preferences. There are four items, though, that I always pack on a road trip. Whatever road you are on, wherever it is taking you, remember to pack these four essentials.
Cash. Most of us carry very little cash these days. Almost everywhere accepts credit and debit cards. A lot of state park and recreation areas, though, require cash payment for use. You never know when you will run into a fun roadside stand selling home-made pies or home-grown pecans. A lot of these small stands are cash-only. Bring a variety of bills in case getting change back is not an option. It’s also good to have the back-up in case something happens to your credit or debit card. When you are running on “empty” in podunk middle-of-nowhere and that decades old gas pump won’t accept your card, you’ll be glad to have the cash on hand.
Flip-flops. Or any open-toed sandal that is comfortable. After a long day of hiking or wondering around downtown it feels good to take those hot, confining shoes off! Even if it does mean that foot odor gets unleashed. Flip-flops have a way of making your feet feel pampered while riding in the car. They serve another purpose, too. Unless you are staying in hotels every night, showers are few and far between on road trips. When there is one available, it is usually public use and who knows what kind of athlete’s foot last used that space. Always have water-ready sandals on hand to keep your feet protected. If you want something with a little more support to it, check out these OluKai sandals. Kenon wears them everywhere from April until October.
Cell-phone chargers. Most vehicles come equipped with USB plug-ins making it easy to keep batteries charged on the road. If yours does not there are plenty of options for back up chargers, like this Mophie powerstation.
Sanitary wipes. Can we have a real moment? Road trips bring out the worst in hygiene. As we’ve already covered, showers can be scarce. The active nature of road trips creates sweaty humans. The humans start to stink. The car gets dirty. We are usually doing activities in the messy outdoors. The public restrooms are germy. Things get sort of gross.
There are two different kinds of wipes that can help with this problem: The first kind is the ones used to disinfect hands after using the toilet and before eating. Wet Wipes and Kleenex both have wonderful products for this use. The other kind is the ones used to keep unmentionable parts of the body feeling and smelling fresh! Kenon and I bring both on every road trip. Summers Eve is a trustworthy product for females. They have a variety of options including scented, non-scented, and sensitive skin so you can find what is best for your body. Kenon bought these DUDE Wipes and, as silly as it sounded to me, they are a great product and so easy to pack. And, at the risk of sounding like a 1950s commercial, I honestly do love that he smells clean in the car. Yes, you could buy normal bulk adult wipes that work to the same purpose. But you’re on vacation – treat yourself!