Road Trip Items to Bring?

Messages
14,999
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
First off, congratulations!!!!! Sorry I couldn't be there for the wedding. Agree with everyone above and whenever I am driving a longer distance I bring bottled water (for me) and snacks, usually granola bars or Chex Mix type snacks. Also don't forget cell phone chargers.
 
Messages
506
Location
New Jersey
I retract my sarcasm. I hope you prepare carefully and have a worthwhile experience. It’s not for everybody. Doesn’t make it a bad idea.
 
Messages
3,737
Location
Cali
Pack a small tool pouch with various wrenches, sockets and screwdrivers and whatever else you could think of, picked up one of these army tool pouches at an army surplus store.
2444-A.jpg
 

wwillson

Staff member
Messages
3,489
Location
Naperville, IL
Check your tire pressure before you leave.

Take with you;

  • Spare tire (check air pressure)
  • deepwell socket, extension, and breaker bar for changing tires, much easier than the provided tools
  • short 2x4 or 2x6 to place a bottle jack on for changing tires.
  • bottle jack.
  • dash cam - you'll see some interesting things on the roads.
  • download offline google maps to your phone for any area you might travel to. You'll have bad reception some places.
  • tire inflator if you have one
  • Where the speed limit is 80, go 70 or 75, 80 is way too fast.
  • Do not make a habit of driving beside RVs, there are many inexperienced drivers driving them.
  • drink lots of water
  • stop every 150 miles for a quick break, it will keep you sharp.
edit: where you can, get off the interstates and take US/State highways, you'll see things you would have missed on the interstate.
 
Messages
2,246
Location
Seattle-ish, WA
Paper maps.
Tire inflator

I've taken two roadtrips this year, 3,100 miles in June (WA, ID, MT, WY, OR, ), and 1,300 just before Labor Day (OR, NorCal). Don't plan on using mapping software and sat/nav reliably everywhere. Just an official sate Highway map is ok, grab them at Chambers of Commerce, Welcome Centers, etc. On the second trip I was lucky/prepared to have a can of inflator so I could limp to a Les Schwab; It would have been a real hassle unpacking the car to access the tire, swapping on the donut, etc.

Among other things, I also keep my last-changed out v-belts in with the spare tire (plugs, spare used coil, etc). That saved me once on a trip; no need to find an accessory/power steering belt for a Land Cruiser at 6pm on Sunday in rural WA; just put in the old one and continue home.

I did a "lap" of AZ starting from OC several years ago, really beautiful country.
 
Messages
7,950
Location
North Carolina
I'm not worried about my cars on a road trip. I don't even carry spare quarts of oil anymore - one car has 9 in the sump and the other has 6.

Both cars have, at all times, first aid kits and roadside assistance kits. To each roadside kit I added a Noco jump starter plugged into the rear 12v outlet as well as a flashlight and headlamp. Fresh batteries still in the package for each. Both first aid kits have a CAT.

What I do worry about is the people in the car, especially if travelling in "remote" locations. Water, blankets, wipes, etc. get added depending on the situation.
 

Nick1994

$50 Site Donor
Messages
12,993
Location
Phoenix, AZ
In a 2020 vehicle? I wouldn't take any of that. Window cleaner isn't needed here in the desert.

In 2013 my aunt and I took a 9 year old VW with 145k miles on it on a 2 week 4,750 mile trip to Seattle and back. We didn't even have a screwdriver. Actually I never even checked the oil! :ROFLMAO:

In 2014 I drove my 97' Camry with 194k miles up to Montana and back. 3,000 miles in one week, I did bring a ratchet set and a bag of hand tools, wasn't needed.
 
Messages
36,242
Location
ME
If you're out of cell phone range a standalone GPS would be handy. Or download maps to your phone ahead of time.

Bring an OBD-2 phone dongle. Might be fun to track tranny temps going up steep grades or whatever.

Water, beef jerky, peanut M&Ms, trail mix, a blanket, jumper cables, tire plugs, inflator, chunk of plywood to put between the jack and gravel. Pipe to add leverage to the stock lug wrench.

My prius had two flats on a week long business trip. I was following the "two is one, one is none" philosophy and barely made it through.
 

The Critic

Thread starter
Messages
23,359
Location
CA
Thanks for all of the suggestions. I decided to pack all reasonable items into a single box.

Milwaukee inflator, jumper pack, 1/4” metric socket set, 1/4” ratchet w/extension, coolant, oil, breaker bar with socket, window cleaner, quick detailer and a few microfiber towels.
 

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JHZR2

Staff member
Messages
45,586
Location
New Jersey
I don’t get all the sarcastic comments. Sounds like a great trip, and I assume you’ll get away from fires and smoke... and if the weather is as beautiful there as it is here, it will be great.

Youve got a new truck. There’s a Walmart in every town, and three gas stations in between, even if things are a bit more spread out, out west. You’re not going in any odd time of year.

Id bring enough food and drink to be comfortable, and some extra oil of your choice if you want to avoid buying a quart in the way. If you’ve got a spare, just air it up and ensure the tools are good. Inflate your tires before you leave, and dont weigh yourself down with extra inflators (unless you don’t have a spare, then it changes things a bit). I also clean the inside and outside of the car well before leaving. So bringing paper towels is good, but a ton of cleaning supplies is a bit much. Your truck will get dirty, at least on the outside, as you cover miles..

I usually like to bring a small ratchet set, and one of those cheap orange handled screwdrivers from HD with the interchangeable bits. Anything much more than those tools needs a bit more thought and planning anyway.,.

I like to stop pretty routinely, and it’s rare on a long trip that I go more than 150-200 miles without stopping. It’s bad to sit for too long.
 
Messages
372
Location
Scottsdale, AZ
We are taking my 2020 Ram on a week long road trip thru rural CA, AZ and UT.

I have never taken a long road trip thru rural areas before. What items should I bring with me?

I was thinking:
- gallon of 50/50 antifreeze
- jumper pack
- window cleaner
- extra quart of oil

Thanks!
I’d forget the anti freeze, oil, and window cleaner. I’d throw in a cigarette lighter tire inflator and a small ratchet set with the most common sizes you use, other than that a gallon of water is never a bad thing to bring.

edit: sorry I just realized you already got your advice.
 
Messages
48
Location
Newport, RI
I would check your lugnuts and make sure they are not overtightened and you can get them off with the factory lug wrench. I usually bring a breaker bar and socket to fit the factory lugs. On a new vehicle the most likely problem will be tire related.

Have fun!
 
Messages
6,488
Location
New England
We are taking my 2020 Ram on a week long road trip thru rural CA, AZ and UT.

I have never taken a long road trip thru rural areas before. What items should I bring with me?

I was thinking:
- gallon of 50/50 antifreeze
- jumper pack
- window cleaner
- extra quart of oil

Thanks!
Window cleaner, phone, good flashlight and enjoy your trip.
 
Last edited:
Messages
7,286
Location
California
Provisions, water, cell phone charger and AAA. And whatever is needed for the trip. On my Bay Area - Tahoe jaunts with a friend’s car, I’ll do a once over at the first stop for gas/coffee.

On an older car or one that takes esoteric consumables, coolant and oil meeting OEM specs. Prestone Cor-Guard is identical to US and Asian service fill if need be. I remember having to add oil twice on a newish car - spec is 0W-20, in went Formula Shell 5W-20 so it can make the trip home.
 
Messages
316
Location
MO, USA
Aquapel on the windows. Bug guts and bird parts clean off much easier. A large caliber rifle & ammo.
is a 1904 mauser with a ammo the size of a small nuke big enough, plus its a sniper rifle!! 800 meter kill shot with flag sites, no scope, and it will break your shoulder. my son once hit a small owl and it took me about 30mins to dig the body out of the grill !! btw i'm pro sensible gun ownership anti NRA
 
Messages
3,466
Location
Chicagoland
Since it’s a new car I’d maybe bring some extra oil but that’s it. I’d bring cell phone chargers/battery bricks, snacks like beef jerky or whatever delicious keto snacks my wife makes, and some drinks like Powerade/Powerade zero and water.
 
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