It’s summertime! If your kids are still on break, maybe you’re hoping to squeeze in that trip you’ve been wanting to take. Before loading up your vehicle with everything, we’ve prepared a little “prep list” for you to make sure your road trip goes as smoothly as possible.
If you want to keep your family safe on the road, read on for some of our best tips.
The vehicle preparation phase should ideally begin a month before your planned trip. This will give you ample time to schedule any appointments and overcome any hiccups that may arise. Having a well-prepared vehicle is the foundation to starting any successful road trip.
Schedule an inspection for your windshield.
First and foremost, you’ll want to ensure you don’t have any chips or cracks in your windshield. While they may appear harmless for the moment, once you’re on the road, there is no telling what kind of weather or circumstances you may encounter.
MobileTech Auto Glass is happy to have one of our certified technicians come out to you and perform a quick inspection of your vehicle’s auto glass. We will inspect for cracks, chips, pits, and any other issues that may put the integrity of your vehicle at risk.
Replace any damaged auto glass.
Remember, your windshield is a huge part of vehicle safety, and those little chips and cracks in your windshield do matter. MobileTech will work with you or your insurance to get everything in tip-top shape as quickly as possible, all with the convenience of our mobile “come to you” service.
Invest in necessary tools.
We always recommend keeping your windshield clean, so it may serve you well to bring along a glass cleaner of your own to remove any dirt or debris that accumulates for maximum visibility.
We also suggest a bug remover to avoid potential damage to your paint job.
Pro Tip: We always like to use microfiber cloths on your vehicle’s auto glass and paint for a lint and streak-free finish.
Make sure all fluids are full.
While having a full gas tank is a no-brainer for a road trip, topping off all other fluids in your vehicle may not be top-of-mind. Keep in mind how many miles away you are from needing your next oil change, as this also ensures smooth sailing.
Have all your car documents.
Keeping car-related documents on hand is always a good rule of thumb. This would include driver’s license, car registration, and proof of insurance. If traveling internationally, bring passports for the whole family and keep them somewhere you can easily access them, such as the glove box.
Inside Car Prep
Next up is the inside of your car. These are not all ‘necessities’ by any means, but things would be nice to have on hand to keep the car situation more comfortable and organized.
Use weather-resistant or custom mats.
If you already have children, this probably comes as no surprise, but all-weather mats are a true life saver for your vehicle’s interior. Considering this is a road trip we’re talking about, think about the adventures you’ll be going on (possibly mud-filled) and piling those kiddos back into the car. They may not think about wiping those muddy shoes on the back of your chair in the same way you do.
Bring containers for organization.
Depending on the space you have in your vehicle will determine the size of the container you opt for. You can find affordable, collapsable bins anywhere from Amazon to your local dollar store. Having a few of these to keep snacks, toys, or other essentials organized will make life easier for everyone on board.
Try out a backseat hack.
So, we all know eating in the car (often fast food) is just a part of the name of the game. If you’re looking for a way to contain the mess of flying french fries and crumpled wrappers that go straight to the floor, consider using a basket like this to put the kid’s food in. You could also try something like a backseat travel tray.
Wipes all day.
Wipes – need we say more? Those with or without children benefit from an easy-to-access wet wipe.
Car vacuum or car wash.
This is a luxury item, but having a cordless car vacuum is an excellent way to clean up as you go along. You may also be able to find a free vacuum cleaner at car washes in towns you pass through.
For the Kiddos
‘Snacks’ in all capitals was not by mistake; any parent knows just how crucial it is to have a number of snack options. One thing you may not think about, however, is fun ways to make snacking more of an ‘activity.’ Try a snack necklace with cereal or pretzels, turn animal crackers into a petting zoo, or go fishing for some Goldfish Crackers.
Other healthy snack ideas? Beef jerky, popcorn, hard-boiled eggs, protein bars, fruit and veggies, and protein bars.
Have necessary medicines.
Those with a specific medical condition should always have what they need to stay healthy. This may include daily needs as well as ‘worst-case scenario’ needs.
Additionally, having medicine on hand for headaches, fevers, motion sickness, and allergies is also a good idea.
Pro Tip: A first aid kit also makes a great addition to this list!
Get creative with games.
Car games are a right-of-passage. Camp Fire has a couple of ideas for you:
- “Would you rather”
- “I spy”
- “How many things can you find that start with the ‘A’ sound?”
- “Where do you see the color?”
- “How far into the ABCs can you get looking for things that begin with each letter?”
Have something to listen to.
Having a few good books on audio is a great idea for the whole family — a few books for the children and maybe even a book for the adults. Several podcasts are directed toward the entire family, such as Storynory, The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd, Brains On!, or Buy Why. And of course, some music for everyone to enjoy with the windows down!
Scope out local parks or open spaces.
Pent-up toddler? Complaining teenager? You need out-of-the-car moments to move their (and your) body! Stretch, climb, run, throw a ball, and ride your bike (if you’ve brought it). Whatever you do, just keep everyone moving. Super hot where you’re at? Find a splash pad!
No matter where your travels take you, MobileTech Auto Glass is your number one choice for reliable and efficient windshield repair and replacement in Phoenix, Arizona.