Posted by Michael Barber, December 23, 2013 (last updated on November 28, 2018)
Planning a road trip for the holidays? How exciting! It's going to be great, seeing family and friends, enjoying all the festivities, and eating a great dinner. Before you get ahead of yourself, make sure that you have prepared appropriately for your trip. You won't just need basic, common-sense items, you want to cover yourself for possible unexpected situations, too. Including a first-aid kit for your road trip is a good start.
Start with the Basics
Your road trip
first aid kit should include basic supplies like band aids in several
assorted sizes, sterile gauze pads, hypoallergenic adhesive tape,
tweezers, a needle, plenty of moistened towelettes, antiseptic, and a
thermometer. You can pick up a basic first aid kit at your local drug or
grocery store, or put one together yourself.
Blankets and Warm Clothes
If you'll be traveling in snowy areas, you'll want to have extra blankets and other items to keep you warm in case you get stranded in your car. Pack extra clothes for everyone traveling with you. Make sure everyone has a warm winter coat, gloves, scarf, and hat. Other snow essentials include road flares, tea light candles, and tools you might use to help get your car unstuck.
Food and Water
You'll want to pack food for your trip, including emergency items, such as energy bars. Be sure to pack enough of these basics to accommodate each passenger for at least two to three days. It's tempting to pack a lot of junk food, but not only is it unhealthy, it's also empty calories that won't keep you full. Stick to snacks such as granola bars, trail mix, fruit, and even cereal. Keep perishables, such as milk, in a cooler, and pack plenty of water for everyone.
Plan for the Unexpected
When you're taking a road trip, you never know what may happen. You could get a flat tire, run out of gas, or get stuck in traffic. It's a good idea to add items to your kit in case you're met with the unexpected. Among these items, you should include an emergency car kit, a full gas can, extra doses of prescribed medications, and a list of urgent care centers along your route. Also bring some time-passing materials along for the ride, such as cards, books, and travel games.
Of course you would never leave home without your beloved cellphone, and everyone in the family probably has one of their own as well. But it never hurts to be over-prepared. Buy a cheap Pay-as-you-go phone and an extra battery and pack it in your car's first aid kit. Make sure everyone in the family has the number and knows where it is incase of emergencies. Make sure the kids know that this isn't a phone for texting and tweeting, it is only to be used in emergencies.
Related: 6 Tips for Running in the Winter
road trip should be a joyful experience. Enjoy your trip, but be safe
and make sure you're prepared for anything that may happen. It's always
best to prepare for the worst and expect the best.