Even the best-laid plans can go awry, and if you’re on a long drive or a road trip, you never know what might be around the next corner quite literally! Nine times out of ten, everything will be absolutely fine and you’ll get to your destination with no problems whatsoever you are on your own car or rental car. But you have to be always ready and alert, only if luck gives a hand and you are left on the side of the road as soon as the sunsets. Here’s our advice on the essentials to keep you in your car for emergencies, so that you and your passengers can get to where you are going safely.
Tools and a spare tyre
If you’re just popping down the road then there’s probably no need to put any tools in the boot. But long drives or road trips are more likely to cause punctures or mechanical problems, especially if you are going through a challenging region like a mountain or a desert. Make sure you have everything you need to change tires (including fully inflated and in good condition) and keep a jack and socket for mounting wheel nuts.
Don’t always rely on your sat-nav to get you where you’re going – sometimes even the best onboard navigation system can get confused, and if you lose that all-important satellite signal then it may crash completely. Plan your journey beforehand, and take a traditional paper map with the route marked out, just in case your TomTom decides to go to sleep!
Food and water
Especially important if you’re on a long journey, food and water should be a part of your essential kit, especially clean drinking water. Dehydration can be a real danger, especially in hot climates, so make sure you take whatever you think and then something else. High calorie foods like chocolate bars or cereal bars will also give you more energy.
A fully charged phone and in-car charger
A fully charged phone is probably the one thing we don’t need to tell you to remember – we all have our phones permanently in our hands these days! However, the other bit of kit that’s essential is a charging lead that will plug into your car’s cigarette lighter. If you’re worried about flattening the battery then why not invest in a solar charger that uses sunlight to give your tech a power boost?
Warm blankets and clothes
The days may be hitting the mid-30s°C, but night-time temperatures in the desert can plummet. Make sure you have enough warm sweaters in your boot and pack a two-sided blanket in your emergency kit for real emergencies.
First Aid kit
Always make sure you’ve got a well-stocked first-aid kit in the car that’s capable of dealing with minor injuries. Also, make sure you know things to do in an emergency. Our advice: Take a first aid course – this is a useful life skill and can mean the difference between life and death in a serious accident.
A handy emergency kit
Our tip is to get a Tupperware box and pop in essentials like a multi-tool, a torch, a tow rope, warning triangle, and a Hi-Viz jacket, just in case you have to repair your car at the side of the road at night.
If you do have an accident in the middle of nowhere, a dash cam can make sure there’s recorded evidence of the event. While this may all sound like a “belts and braces” approach to travel, it’s easy to pop into your car’s trunk. before you head off. We also recommend that you make sure you tell someone where you are going and when you plan to reach your destination so that if you have a problem, a search can be started as soon as possible. As we said at the beginning, in most cases, you will have a fun, hassle-free road trip to remember. But with a little planning and some essentials, you can take care of the business if things get a little messy along the way.