Whether you’re heading out onto the open road with your immediate family members or if you’re finally hitting the road with that group of friends you’ve been meaning to go on a road trip with forever, then know that road trips can be a lot of fun and should be on everyone’s bucket list to try at least three times, regardless of who you go with. Why three times? Well by the third road trip you’ll perhaps be a little more clued up about how much to pack, which types of roads to explore, and where and how to sleep (such as packing in a tent and camping gear – just in case you don’t want to spend too much on expensive accommodation, or on the flip side, you don’t want to sleep in your car) and you’ll just have a much better idea of how to enhance the road trip.

If it’s going to be your first time hitting the road as part of a road trip however, there are a few essentials you should make sure to always pack in to ensure you have a fun and memorable time because otherwise, why would you want to go if you aren’t going to have a whale of a time?

Your Smartphone Car Charger

If you keep your smartphone plugged into the power supply of your car, you pretty much have all the navigational tools you’ll need. It baffles the mind as to how people managed to travel in the old days and as much as the prospect of getting lost may appeal to the adventurous traveller’s mind, it’d be nice to be able to just make a call or refer to your built-in navigational system on your smartphone to find your way again. It’s fairly simple to navigate your way out of a sticky spot if you do end up lost but have your iPhone or Android on you.

Not only that – some apps these days are so intuitive that they can pin-point and suggest good spots you might enjoy, based on your location and based on your taste picked up through other places you might have previously checked-in to or places, interests that you’ve liked on your social media channels. I particularly like to have quick and easy access to essential information such as where I can get a service for tyres near me should I break down, the best restaurants near me or the nearest ATM to me wherever I go and that information is always a few taps of my screen away.

Of course, using these apps on your phone all the time will be a mega drain on your battery so it’s important that you ensure you’ve got your in-car charger packed away and ready to take with you and, as an added piece of advice, I’d recommend that you buy a portable power bank for your phone, just in case you’re out and about and find that you need that extra bit of battery in your phone.

Warm Sleeping Gear

In fact, you should perhaps go the full nine yards and pack in a complete set of camping gear, from a tent to a fire-starter. If you feel that buying a new set, you could get used camping gears at a clearance sale for a comparatively lower price. However, if you are not too keen on used products, you could opt for a new set! Who knows when camping might be an adventure looming on the horizon, or indeed if it might be a matter of emergency due to breaking down or just needing to have a good rest along the road? Otherwise you should always keep a blanket in your car — things can get really cold if the engine isn’t running for whatever reason (I’ll try not to tempt fate here).

Otherwise some of the of the other essentials are somewhat obvious ones, like clean clothes and underwear, a first-aid kit, your driver’s license, money (and credit cards), etc. Once you’ve got all your stuff together and you’re happy to hit the road there’s only one thing left to say and that’s enjoy the open road that awaits!