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Make Sure You're Prepared With These Car Essentials Before Your Next Road Trip

Planning a fun road trip for winter break? From an electric blanket to first aid kits, our guide will make sure you're prepared for it all.

By Ella Chakarian, Jenny Lee Dec 24, 2023 12:00 PMTags
Shop Amazon Road Trip EssentialsE! News Illustration / Photos Courtesy of Amazon

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Merry Christmas Eve! We have just a day left until it's officially Xmas, and we couldn't be more ready for some end-of-year R&R. If you're using that free time to finally take that grand "road trip" adventure with your loved ones and create some unforgettable memories, you're going to want to be well prepared!

Before you hit the road, make sure you're ready for everything that comes your way with these must-have essentials from Amazon. From practical items like car emergency kits and first aid supplies to more comfort-centered finds like rechargeable hand warmers and twistable travel pillows, we've curated some of the best essentials for you to include on your packing list.

See below for the best Amazon finds to bring on your upcoming road trip this spring. Bon voyage, bestie!

AstroAI Tire Inflator Portable Air Compressor Air Pump for Car Tires

A flat tire can put an instant damper on even the best road trips, especially in cases where the closest auto shop is ... nowhere to be found. This portable tire inflator with 56,700+ Amazon reviews will have you prepared to handle a deflated tire in a matter of minutes; it's also decked out in extra handy features like smart inflation auto shut-off, a digital screen with tire pressure readouts, and a travel flashlight for nighttime use.

Ocoopa Hand Warmers Rechargeable

Save your fingers and hands from the cold this winter with this rechargeable hand warmer that has 22,000+ five-star reviews on Amazon. Featuring a sleek, compact design, the hand warmer heats up in seconds and fits comfortably into the palm of your hand. An unexpected bonus is that it can also be used as a power bank to charge your electronic devices!

Touchland Power Mist Hydrating Hand Sanitizer Spray - Pack of 3

Road trips aren't complete without munching on delicious snacks in the car! Keep your hands clean with these cult-fave Touchland hand sanitizer sprays, which are available in multiple pack sizes and scents. This particular pack of three sanitizers includes scents Rainwater, Beach Coco & Unscented, and each is formualted with aloe vera and lemon essential oil to leave your hands feeling soft and clean. Did we mention that they happen to be on sale right now?

Hotor Car Trash Can with Lid and Storage Pockets

Road trip vacations are meant to be filled with fun and relaxation, and that can be hard to do if your car space is messy and cluttered with snack wrappers, napkins and more. With this car trash can, which is waterproof and features a lid and and storage pockets, you won't have to worry about garbage ruining your road trip experience. Use the adjustable strap to hang it over a seat or place it on the floor.

BlingSting Glammer Safety Hammer

The name of the road trip game is, "Better safe than sorry," and this small-but-mighty escape hammerwill make you a winner. It's equipped with a reinforced carbide tip to break windows with a tap, a car visor strap for easy storage & reach, and a seatbelt cutter that will help you act quickly to free yourself & other trapped passengers. Of course, we hope you'll never have to use this tool, but we want you to be prepared as best you can for any situation that might come up mid-road trip.

Spot X with Bluetooth 2-Way Satellite Messenger

If you're hitting the slopes or heading somewhere more remote for your winter road trip, this two-way satellite messenger will help preserve your peace of mind in case of unexpected emergencies where your phone may not have cellular service. The messenger works as a standalone communication device with its own dedicated U.S. mobile number to receive messages, and you're able to contact your loved ones or send an S.O.S. to a 24/7 Search & Rescue service. It also uses GPS to determine your location and transmit your exact coordinates to others.

Lamicall Car Headrest Mount

If you're traveling with kids, you'll definitely want to snag this headrest mount while it's on sale for just $16. One reviewer shares, "Kids are able to mount phones and Nintendo Switches up to these which makes for much quieter car rides. Charging cable in both cars reach these so I don't have to worry about units dying during the trip."

Stalwart Heated Car Blanket

This electric blanket is the perfect solution for passengers who are always cold, especially since it's car adaptable and has a 96-inch-long cord that ensures even those in the backseat can stay warm and cozy. The blanket also folds easily so it can be stored away in the trunk or backseat without taking up too much space (and every bit of space counts when you're packing for a road trip)!

Vtoman X7 Jump Starter with Air Compressor with 160PSI Digital Tire Inflator

It's always a good idea to have a jump starter on hand, both during seasonal road trips and on the daily. This Vtoman jump starter has a peak starting current of 4250A and a large battery capacity, making it a reliable choice for most vehicles. It's also designed with a user-friendly 5.1-inch smart screen that provides important data such as battery level and real-time tire pressure reading. Additionally, the tool functions as a power bank, LED flashlight, and tire inflator.

Thrive Roadside Emergency Car Kit

One of the most important rules of road tripping (other than to enjoy yourself) is to be prepared for emergencies, especially with the possibility that you might get stuck out on the road in the middle of nowhere. This emergency kit will make sure you're prepared for both car and first aid emergencies, giving you peace of mind no matter where you're headed.

Vetoos Car Roadside Emergency Kit with Jumper Cables

This is another roadside emergency kit that fits all the criteria for ensuring your safety while out on the road. It contains the most practical supplies, including jumper cables, a tow rope, tire pressure gage and multifunctional folding shovel, along with a 47-piece first aid set. The kit also includes an auto tool set that includes essential tools that you might need in case you need to repair your car in a pinch.

First Aid Only 442 All-Purpose Emergency First Aid Kit - 298 Pieces

Even if you're not road tripping, it's always a great idea to have a comprehensive first aid kit stored in your car. This 298-piece all-purpose first aid emergency kit is a stellar option, and it has over 61,600 five-star reviews on Amazon. It includes the essentials you might need in a variety of emergency first aid situations, such as antibiotic ointments, burn cream packets, aspirin and ibuprofen, wound closures and antiseptic towelettes.

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Surviveware Comprehensive Premium First Aid Kit - 200 Pieces

This first aid kit is a registered FDA Medical Device and is another stellar option that will have you prepared to care for minor wounds, cuts, scrapes and burns. The kit itself is optimally designed for practicality, from labelled inner compartments to water resistant material and versatile straps. It also includes an emergency blanket and mini first aid kit that fits easily into your glove compartment or center console organizer.

Hot Logic Mini - 12V Version

The winter air might be cold, but that doesn't mean your food has to be. This mini portable oven and food warmer is car adaptable, allowing you to heat a frozen boxed meal or warm your favorite comfort food while driving. Just place your meal inside, plug it in and wait for cozy goodness. With this, you'll be able to bring a little piece of home with you on your next road trip, no matter how far you're traveling.

Gerber Gear Suspension-NXT 15-in-1 Multi-Tool Pocket Knife Set

Having a multi-purpose tool can get you out of sticky situations that you didn't even think to anticipate — like all those times where having a bottle opener, screwdriver or even ruler would have made things sooo much easier. This 15-in-1 multitool is versatile to the max, and the slim design allows for optimal accessibility, making it a perfect addition to your car's emergency kit.

Vtoman FlashSpeed 1500 Portable Power Station 1500W

A reliable power bank is an exceptional investment for both your home, auto, and emergency needs — especially when it's 42% off. The Vtoman FlashSpeed 1500 portable power station powers up in an hour, according to the brand, and it includes an input port for additional solar-powered charging. It features a flat-top design for easy stacking & storage, along with a built-in top storage box for cable organization, and it ensures continuous power to your essentials with a switchover time of less than 20ms.

Snow Moover 39-Inch Extendable Snow Brush with Detachable Ice Scraper for Car

Winter and snow go hand in hand, and that's often a big part of what makes road trips in wintertime so great. What's not so great, though, is when snow and ice pile on to your car windshield, making it dangerous to drive around. This extendable snow brush is here to solve this dilemma, with thick bristles that easily brush off snow from your car and a detachable ice scraper that breaks through the ice surface without scratching your car. The brush has three pieces that can be separated for easy storage when not in use.

Garmin GPS Navigator with 5-inch Display

This Garmin GPS navigator has 11,800+ five-star Amazon reviews, with multiple shoppers praising its user-friendly functions. It features simple on-screen menus and easy-to-see maps of the U.S. & Canada, and it's ready to use right out of the box without the use of a smartphone. The navigator even includes driver alerts for things like sharp curves, school zones, and speed cameras to help you drive safer.

Drive Auto Products Compact Black Car Trunk Organizer with Adjustable Straps

When you're going on a road trip, every bit of packing space counts, but it can be difficult to organize all your luggage efficiently. Make the most of your car trunk with this compact trunk organizer that has 54,700+ five-star reviews on Amazon. It can be resized to fit large or small vehicle spaces and conveniently folds away when not in use, and it easily fastens to the backseat or trunk anchor points to keep your belongings in place. Plus, it's available in three colors (black, gray, tan).

High Road Large CarHop Car Seat Organizer

The middle backseat is probably the most dreaded seat in the car, with the least amount of sitting and leg space. However, with this versatile car seat organizer and cooler, you can put that middle seat to good use. Featuring four pockets on each side, a flippable lid that can be used as a tray, a cupholder and an insulated cooler, this organizer is the perfect road trip companion. Plus, it has a removable shoulder strap for easy transport.

Foval 200W Car Power Inverter

In the age of technology, having an accessible charger in the car is absolutely an essential thing to check off as you prepare for your next road trip. This car power converter features two U.S. sockets and four USB charging ports to ensure that everyone in the car can charge their device without having to argue over who has the lowest battery percentage. The charger also includes a quiet cooling fan to prevent overheating, a power switch and velcro straps for easy organization and storage.

Moodooy Disposable Emergency Urinal Bag - Pack of 20

Let's get real: When you have to go, you have to go. On long road trips where the next rest stop is at least 20 or 30 minutes away, every minute feels like an hour of pure misery. These individually packaged disposable emergency bags can be used for urine or vomit — just open the bag, do what you have to to do and seal it up. The absorbent cotton cloth in the bag turns into an odorless anti-spill gel, and the sealing strip will ensure that there are no leaks or smells.

Mp Mozzpak Toilet Seat Covers Disposable - 100 Pieces

In the case that you're lucky enough to make it to the next rest stop, you run the risk of there not being toilet seat covers ... and who knows how many people have sat on that toilet to do their business before you. These disposable toilet seat covers are an absolute lifesaver to have on hand to ensure that you can prioritize hygiene and comfort no matter where you go.

Dot&Dot Twist Memory Foam Travel Pillow

Sure, you won't be able to bring your bed along with you on your road trip, but with this adjustable memory foam travel pillow, you can still get a good nap in before you reach your destination. The twistable pillows are designed to contour to any shape and position you want, making it great to use for neck, head, back, shoulder or spine support.

On the other hand, if you're planning to hibernate in your home until sunnier days come back around, check out our roundup of everything you need to embrace "rot girl winter."

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—Originally published Nov. 6, 2022, at 3:00 a.m. PT