Is it time for you to leave this town, time to get away? If you’re planning the mother of all road trips, you’ll need to make sure you’re fully stocked and supplied to set off into the sunset. Here’s a handy checklist of things you might want to cover before you hit the open road to ensure you’re prepared for any eventuality.

1) Prime your vehicle

Whether you’re setting off in a VW camper van or a Mini Cooper, you’ll need a good set of wheels that won’t let you down in the middle of nowhere. This means testing your brakes, checking all lights and indicators work and topping up the oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, windscreen wash and, of course, petrol! You should also give the tyres a once-over and make sure they’re in a roadworthy state for an extended journey. For best results, treat your car to an MOT before setting off.

2) Pack your bags

What do you take on a lengthy road trip? Well, several changes of clothes would be advisable, as would a towel, toiletries and a first aid kit. If your journey is expected to take you into sunny climes, also stock up on sunscreen, sunglasses and insect repellent, if relevant. If camping, you will of course need a tent, sleeping bag and torch, as well as camping chairs and cooking gear.

packing bag

3) Stock up on supplies

First and foremost, make sure you’ve got a plentiful supply of water, regardless of your destination or route. You’ll also want plenty of snackables such as crisps, nuts, protein bars and fruit, as well as some sandwiches for a heftier meal on the road. Top tip: wet wipes are a godsend if there’s no shower in sight! Antibacterial liquid soap also works wonders when you can’t find a tap for love nor money.

4) Plan a loose itinerary

While there’s nothing quite as attractive as the freedom afforded by the open road, it’s a good idea to have a rough route planned out in your head so that you can budget time accordingly and look for places to rest your weary head along the way. It’s no use feeling fatigued at the end of a long day’s driving, only to find that the nearest hotel, hostel or campsite is another 100 miles away.

road trip planning

5) Choose your travel companions carefully

You never really know someone until you’re trapped inside a metal box with them for hours on end. Sure, saddling up with those strangers you just met while travelling might sound fun, but foibles and character quirks can quickly become irritating in close quarters. Also, as a general rule of thumb, three people in the back seat is at least one person too many for long journeys.

6) Make a playlist!

Half the fun of a road trip is the soundtrack which accompanies it. While you and your buddies will no doubt have enough to chat about for parts of the journey, there are others where you’ll want to sit back and enjoy the scenery, collect your thoughts or simply have snooze. A great playlist can make all the difference. And with that, it’s time to go get lost!

The Ultimate Road Trip Checklist
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