Friday 5: Road Trip Essentials

2021 has been deemed the “Year of the Road Trip”! This past weekend, we drove to Flagstaff, AZ from Phoenix. For those of you that don’t know Arizona, these two cities are approximately 2 hours apart by car but completely different in elevation. Phoenix is definitely in the desert and Flagstaff is in the cool pines. As a matter of fact, Flagstaff is the gateway to the Grand Canyon. Have you been to the Grand Canyon? It is one of the best places see on a road trip!

But, getting back to road trips in general. For a road trip to be successful, you need a few things. We asked, on Instagram, what the top needs were and you answered (thanks for the input followers!) The suggestions seemed to fall into five categories, so it’s the Friday 5 Road Trip Essentials.


If you are traveling with children then you know they will need something other than music and the open road to keep them occupied. Plan ahead and have those tablets or game consoles charged before you leave. It is also wise to bring chargers, you never know when a recharge will be needed!

Adults only, trip? Download a good play list or podcast. There are so many good podcasts now ~ do you have a favorite? Reach out on Instagram and share yours!

I love a good summer read, if I’m not driving! Or when we get to the beach or cabin in the mountains. Check out the Just Try It girls, they asked their readers to share great book selections for the summer. The link will take you right to the post with all the great reading ideas. I picked up a few from this list to read this summer.


I think we can all agree that snacks are mandatory. That said, snack preference is very personal.

Some people have food allergies and others are just picky. I would suggest that snacks be easy to eat while moving (soup would not make my list). Choose foods like crackers (goldfish are a great option) or pretzels because neither leave hands messy.

If you or someone you are traveling with have a sweet tooth, grab gummies or licorice since neither will melt.

Whatever you like make sure you have it on hand so you can be road trip ready at a moments notice.


The great thing about a road trip is that it can be spontaneous and the weather can be too! Things to pack to be prepared for anything include: swimsuit, closed-toed shoes, a rain jacket and a sweatshirt! You just never know when you might find a stream to cool off, a trail to hike, an unexpected downpour or a chilly evening and not being prepared might make the road trip unenjoyable. None of these items take up too much space, so be prepared and have fun!

Well-running auto

Your road trip can be over before it starts if your car is not up to the task. Whether at home or out on the open road, having your car or SUV in good working order is helpful. But braking down or having a flat tire out in the middle of nowhere will really change the excitement of a road trip quickly.

If you keep your maintenance current and get your tires checked regularly, you can be spontaneous with your road trips. Some of the best road trips require little to no planning.

Always check that tires are properly inflated and in solid condition, that includes your spare tire too. Talk to your car care center to make sure that fluids are topped-off or changed if they are dirty or contaminated, radiator and cooling system are in proper operation, and belts and hoses are in good shape.

Keeping your car road trip ready means those trips can be more fun and less work!


And the final item that is necessary for a successful road trip is sunscreen. You need to wear it in the car and when you are out exploring. Sunny days or cloudy days, it doesn’t matter. Bring it along and reapply every 90 minutes or so.

I recently had a spot removed from my forehead and don’t want anyone to go through that. So, please wear your sunscreen whether you road trip, fly to your destination or stay home this summer. Take care of your skin ~ it needs to last your whole life!

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