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Expert Shopper Travel

With gas prices trending down, it may be time to take that road trip you’ve been putting off

Make your road trip comfortable and stress-free with these must-have items

When gas prices seemed to increase by the hour earlier this summer, a getaway in the car was too big a splurge for most people. Now that prices are finally starting to come down, it’s the perfect time to hit the road. 

But you need more than a suitcase and a full gas tank for a successful road trip. If you want to make sure that everyone is comfortable and entertained during those long hours in the car, you’ll need to have a few key essentials for your vacation. 

Here are some last-minute road trip must-haves you’ll definitely want in your car when you hit the highway this summer. 

Road trip essentials

Car organization items

Lusso Gear Front Seat Car Organizer

Prevent the backseat of your car from getting messy with this convenient organizer that attaches to the back of the front seat. It can fit nearly any vehicle and offers pockets for a laptop, tablet, phone, water bottle and more. It also has a security flap that hides the items inside to discourage theft. 

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WixGear Universal Air Vent Magnetic Phone Holder

Use your phone hands-free on your road trip with this magnetic phone holder. It easily attaches to most vents and swivels, so your phone’s display is easier to see. It’s compatible with most smartphones, too. 

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Big Ant Car Trash Bag

This sturdy trash bag keeps your car neat and clean, even on long rides. It offers a 2.5-gallon capacity and is waterproof and leakproof. The adjustable strap can fit around multiple areas in your car, including the headrest or gearshift. 

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FOVAL 200W Car Power Converter with USB Charging Ports

Make sure your smartphone, tablet and other devices stay charged on your trip with this handy car converter. It’s as small as a credit card and offers two standard AC outlets and four USB charging ports. The cigarette lighter adapter works in most cars, too.

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Car comfort items

Everlasting Comfort Car and Truck Seat Cushion

Made of premium memory foam, this car seat cushion can keep you comfortable no matter how long your road trip is. The support it offers can even help alleviate pain in your back, hips and legs. It also has a non-slip bottom to keep it from shifting around. 

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InnoGear Car Diffuser

Your car will stay smelling fresh even after hours on the road with this car essential oil diffuser. It’s lightweight and compact, fitting in most car cup holders. The control buttons are also positioned on top to make operation easier. Best of all, it offers both a continuous and an intermittent mist and can double as a humidifier.

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Safety items

Top Gear Premium Roadside Assistance Kit

This roadside assistance kit can give you peace of mind if you have car issues on your road trip. It comes in a convenient carrying bag and features items you might need on the side of the road like an LED flashlight, reflective safety vest and battery booster cables. It fits easily in most trunks, too.

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Coleman All Purpose Basic First Aid Kit for Minor Emergencies

Be prepared for minor accidents and injuries on your road trip with this first aid kit. It contains over 200 pieces, including bandages, antibiotic ointment, medical tape and a cold pack. The kit is also compact and lightweight, so it’s easy to pack in your car. 

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Food and drink items

YETI Tundra 65 Hard Cooler

Stay stocked with fresh food and cold drinks on your road trip with this generously-sized hard cooler. With extra-thick walls and PermaFrost insulation, it can hold ice for four to five days. It also has a heavy-duty rubber latch to keep the items inside secure and offers excellent durability for camping or picnicking off-road.  

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Klean Kanteen Classic Stainless Steel Water Bottle

This durable stainless steel water bottle ensures you stay hydrated on your car trip. It has a slim, lightweight design that fits most car cup holders. Its wide mouth also allows you to add ice, while the spill-proof lid prevents leaks. It’s available in several fun colors, too. 

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Rubbermaid 14-Piece Brilliance Food Storage Containers with Lids

With this food storage container set, you can protect all your road trip snacks and meals. The containers are made of BPA-free plastic and entirely clear to let you see the contents. The included lids are air-tight, too, so they keep your food fresh.

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Stasher Silicone Reusable Storage Bag, 4-Pack

For food items that aren’t too delicate, these reusable silicone bags are an ideal way to pack snacks for your road trip. The bags are BPA-, PVC- and latex-free and dishwasher- and microwave-safe. This set includes bags in various sizes, too.

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AeroPress Go Portable Travel Coffee Press

If you’re not a fan of drive-thru or gas station coffee, you can enjoy a flavorful cup every morning on your road trip with this travel coffee press. It makes up to three cups at a time and can brew hot coffee or espresso in just a minute. It can also make cold brew and has 350 micro-filters to keep grounds out of your coffee.

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Kids’ items

Tryone Car Headrest Tablet Mount

Make sure the kids are entertained in the backseat with this tablet mount. It connects to the front seat’s headrest, positioning it right where passengers can watch their favorite movies and TV shows. It takes only seconds to install and adjusts to work with most tablets and smartphones. 

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Lusso Gear Kids Travel Tray 

This foldable travel tray makes it easy for kids to color, draw, do puzzles and more in the backseat. The surface has a dry erase board that kids can write on, and the built-in tablet holder has a touch-sensitive cover to protect the screen from damage. 

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Highlights Hidden Pictures 20220 Special Edition Activity Books

This set of four activity books can keep kids ages 6 and up busy in the backseat on your road trip. Each book contains 32 pages of Highlights’ famous hidden picture puzzles, but the pages are black-and-white, so kids also can color them in.

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Briarpatch I SPY Travel Card Game for Kids

Keep children busy on your road trip with this game that helps them appreciate the scenery. It calls for kids to identify items with a certain shape or color and find specific words or letters. It can be played by one or more players and is perfect for kids ages 4 and up.

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Pet items

Kurgo Swivel Seat Belt Tether

This seat belt tether keeps your dog safe and secure on road trips. It connects to existing seat belts and prevents pets who can’t stay still from moving around too much. It even works well for large breed dogs. 

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BAGLHER Pet Travel Bag

This travel pet bag is made of durable polyester material and EPE foam, so it’s tear- and abrasion-resistant. It can hold up to 30 pounds and is available in several colors. It even comes with two collapsible pet bowls and pet food storage containers.

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Jennifer Blair writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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