McCarthy Chevrolet Blog

The Essential Road Trip Car Kit: Checklist


You feel that? Yep, it’s the heat and humidity of summer nipping at our heels, prompting us to buy deodorant in bulk and get the car’s AC serviced. But sweaty pits aren’t all we can expect with summer! For many Kansas City families, June and July mark the beginning of “road trip season,” a time of year that can be both stressful and exciting. To guarantee your family experiences more of the latter and less of the former, review our list of essential road trip items to pack before summer vacationing. Don’t leave home without ‘em.

Road Trip

Items for Everyone

  • Sunscreen: Prevent sunburns and potential skin cancer with a proper lathering of SPF [whatever].
  • First-aid kit: Your first-aid kit should include bandages, antibacterial gel, gauze, tweezers, pain reliever, anti-itch meds, antiseptic or rubbing alcohol, and tape.
  • Tissues or TP: There’s no place for boogers and snot on your seats.
  • Hand sanitizer: Germies, germies, go away….
  • Umbrella: Rain, rain, go away….
  • Wet wipes: The perfect solution to sticky, icky fingers.
  • Drinking water: Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! (Say that three times fast.)
  • Empty gas can: In the event you miss a turn and run out of fuel, a little gas container can be a lifesaver.
  • Travel garbage bin: Don’t litter; this isn’t Mad Max. Toss your rubbish in the trash.
  • Hygiene items: Bring those bulk deodorant sticks, combs, soaps, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and towels. (Who knows when you’ll find a restroom with public showers.)
  • Mints or gum: The perfect thing to mask your morning breath.
  • Chapstick with SPF protection: Keep those luscious lips protected and shimmery.
  • Bug spray: If you plan on spending time outside, a good DEET bug spray should be applied to deter mosquitos, ticks, and other creepy-crawlies.
  • Cooler: Pack your favorite snacks and drinks, as well as a few healthy things.
  • Hiking boots: Lace ‘em up and hit the trails.
  • Antacid – Tums or “the pink stuff” can really help an upset stomach, which is about the worst thing that could happen to a person on a road trip.
  • Stain-removal laundry pen: Something like a Tide Pen can be used in a pinch to clean tiny stains on clothing.
  • Ziploc bags: To store tinier stuff.
  • Bike rack: Install an OEM bicycle rack to your SUV or car, then put some bicycles on it, then ride those bicycles.

Items for Parents

  • Roadmap: Don’t get lost when your GPS signal mysteriously disappears.
  • Portable smartphone charger: In emergencies, you can give a jolt of life to your smartphone with a portable charging device.
  • Rolls of quarters: If you plan on passing through a toll, bring change.
  • A good book: Read a book in your downtime.
  • A good audiobook: Listen to a book in your uptime.
  • Medications: Oftentimes people forget to bring their meds on a road trip. Don’t be like those people.
  • Dashcam: Dashboard cameras are great for road trips, as they both record the places you visit and any accidents you may be involved in.
  • Travel camping grill: Save some money by cooking up breakfast or dinner from the back of your SUV.
  • Cargo management solution: Stay organized with a quality trunk or cargo organizer. (pssst! We can order and install a cargo management accessory for your Chevy.)

Items for Kids

  • Sunshades: Attach sunshades to the rear windows to protect your kids and keep the vehicle a tad cooler.
  • Tablets: As a parent, you know the drill.
  • Extra charging cables: Priority No. 1 should be ensuring your kids have something to play or watch.
  • Wi-Fi Hotspot: Use your phone or turn on your vehicle’s built-in Wi-Fi hotspot to eliminate the “are we there yet” interrogations.
  • Travel pillows: A sleepy child is a cranky child.
  • Coloring books: For coloring.
  • Colored pencils: For coloring. (Don’t leave crayons inside the car, as they can melt and damage the interior.)
  • Window markers: For coloring. (Try Crayola’s washable markers.)
  • Games: Mad Libs, scavenger hunts, Twenty Questions. (Because you can only play the License Plate game for so long.)
  • Binoculars: It’s the perfect “I Spy” accessory.
  • Portable potty: Just because you’re away from home doesn’t mean you should press pause on the potty training.
  • Kite: Stop on a windy day and fly a kite. (Why not?)
  • Bubbles: Roll down the window and let the bubbles do what bubbles do best.

Items for Pets

  • Dog barrier: Keep Fido in the back, where it’s safest.
  • Doggie bed: Position a comfy dog bed in the cargo area of your SUV.
  • Portable water bowl: Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
  • Pet ramp: A ramp system can really improve an elderly dog’s quality of life when road-tripping.
  • Seat covers: Protect your seats from scratches and accidents.
  • Cool treats: Keep some yummy snacks in the cooler for your pup.
  • Frisbee: Don’t keep your dog cooped up in the car all day; toss around a frisbee at a nearby dog park.

And don’t forget your spare tire and emergency roadside kit, which should include items like jumper cables, a multipurpose tool, duct tape, a flashlight, and road flares. For your safety!

McCarthy Chevrolet

Start Your Road Trip at McCarthy Chevy Olathe

Before you begin your summer adventure, make sure to have a vehicle that can make the most of every moment. Stop by our Chevy SUV dealership in Olathe to browse our current selection of crossovers, like the popular Equinox and all-new Blazer. We even have great summer deals on select new Chevrolet models, so contact McCarthy Chevrolet at 913-324-7200 to learn more and start your next road trip on the right foot.



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