Let’s be honest – traveling with kids is an extraordinary yet somewhat challenging experience. Road trips done right with the family create incredible core memories, but may come at a cost to your sanity. (And, your wallet.) Having the right things in your diaper bag, glove box, and luggage can make everything easier and less stressful. This is because no matter the emergency or hiccup, you’re prepared! 

At Safe in the Seat, we’ve been on a road trip or two (or ten) and we’ve got the ultimate road trip packing list. You can head over to our Amazon Shop for our entire catalog of helpful road trip products, but today we’ve rounded up our top 25. Here they are:

25 Family Road Trip Essentials 

Road Trip Essentials for Emergencies

Compact First Aid Kit

First aid kits are a necessity for any trip! This compact option has everything you need, and it’s the perfect size for the car glove box, your luggage, or the diaper bag. 

Car Jump Starter

Whether the kids left the dome light on or the door didn’t get shut all the way, a dead battery in the morning isn’t an uncommon family road trip mishap! This portable charger can jump start your car and get you moving. And, it can also charge your phone and tablets! 

Vomit Bags

If you have a child with motion sickness struggles, you’re probably already dreading your upcoming road trip. We have a bunch of motion sickness products in our Amazon Storefront that will hopefully keep your kiddo comfortable. Grab a few of those prevention tools, but always keep your car stocked with vomit bags.

Fix-A-Flat Aerosol Emergency Flat Tire Repair and Inflator

When you’re family road trip packing, you need to plan for setbacks like flat tires! Having a spare tire is ideal, but this Fix-A-Flat aerosol solution is great in a pinch. The can will patch and inflate your flat tire in no time! 

Baby Road Trip Essentials

Safety Mirror

When you have your children safely rear facing, it’s difficult to see what they’re up to when you’re on long drives. This is specifically nerve-wracking when your kiddo falls asleep. A safety mirror allows you to see your child in the rear-view mirror, so you always know they’re safe. Ensure your mirror is soft-sided and don’t let the view become too much of a distraction. (More on common distractions while driving, HERE.)

Diaper Changing Pad

Whether you’re changing your baby at rest stops or in the back seat, you need a good diaper changing pad. This one has tons of pockets and it folds up to fit on the back of a vehicle headrest. When it’s hanging like this, you have easy access to baby wipes for the whole trip! How handy is that? 

Infant Foot Rattle

Safe car seat toys must be soft-sided and pose no choking risk. These foot rattles are perfect for infants who have more limited entertainment options in the car. The best part? These won’t fall on the floor after a few minutes. 

Pacifier Clips

For any other car seat toys you grab for your baby, use these pacifier clips! You can clip their pacifier or favorite toys to their clothes using this handy tool. (Make sure you don’t attach the pacifier clips to the car seat’s harness straps.) 

Toddler Road Trip Essentials

Pop Tubes

Pop tubes are a toddler favorite, and they’re perfect for car seat fun. They are open-ended, soft-sided, and don’t include a ton of pieces. Even your older kids will love these! 

Firetruck Busy Board 

Busy boards have so many opportunities for play. Your child can practice buckles, buttons, clips, zippers, and shoelaces to expand those fine motor skills while in the car. Plus, it’s shaped like a firetruck, which any toddler would love. 

Zip Top Silicone Snack Containers

These zip-top silicone snack containers can store all of your road trip snacks in a safe soft-sided vessel. That way, if the container gets thrown or it becomes a projectile in a crash, it won’t cause injury! 

Portable Potty Training Toilet

When you’re doing road trips with kids, you’ve got to be in-tune with the bathroom situation along your route. Though it might seem like there are plenty of rest stops on the way, when your toddler has to go, they’ve got to go. This portable potty will make it easier to make sudden roadside stop to tinkle. 

Road Trip Essentials for Kids

LCD Writing Tablet

Entertaining older kids on a road trip doesn’t need to involve screens. Well, at least not standard electronic screens! This LCD writing tablet gives hours of fun and can be reused again and again. 

Secret Decoder Activity Books

If you want to make your road trip with kids really exciting, these decoder activity books will transform the driving time into an exciting spy adventure. There are dozens of activities to keep them busy the whole way! 

Interstate Highway Travel Bingo Set

These classic Interstate Highway travel bingo sets never get old! You can play them again and again with the whole family or by yourself. The assortment pack comes with four different versions of the bingo game to keep the fun coming. 

Road Trip Essentials for Adults

Waterproof Car Trash Can

Between diapers, wipes, wrappers, and disposable food containers, you’ll generate a lot of waste on your road trip. To keep your car organized, have a waterproof car trash can on your vehicle seat. And, don’t forget the trash bags!

Nursing Tops

Babies need to eat, and they’re not always on the same schedule as you. So, stopping to breastfeed is essential when driving long distances. These nursing tops are perfect for making those stops quick and easy. For more on safe car feeding, check out this post.

Munchkin Arm & Hammer Pacifier Wipes

On a long road trip pacifiers, bottles, toys, and more will end up on the floor or in the dirt. You need wipes to sanitize those tools and get them back in the hands of the littles. These wipes make that easy! 

Silicone Tumbler

Moms, we know you love your Stanley cups, but hard-sided water bottles are a big safety risk. If you were to get in a crash, the cup would become a dangerous projectile. However, we want you to stay hydrated. Do so with a silicone tumbler instead! 

Winter Road Trip Essentials

Buckle Me Baby Coat

Children wearing heavy, puffy coats in car seats aren’t safe. These coats compress in an accident, leaving dangerous space between your baby and their safety belts! So, if you’re driving in cold weather and need a winter layering solution, try the Buckle Me baby coat that fastens over the harness straps for safe and cozy riding. 

Car Seat Poncho

If you don’t need something as thick as a Buckle Me baby coat, a car seat poncho works great. It fits and feels like a blanket, but it won’t fall off with the first kick. Plus, it’s 100% winter road trip safe

Snow Broom and Ice Scrapers

When you’re on a road trip in winter, you never know when you’ll hit extreme weather. In these situations, you may need to pull over or find a place to turn in for the night. While you’re resting or waiting, snow and ice can pile up on your car, and this snow broom is the perfect fix! 

Summer Road Trip Essentials

The Noggle

Beating the heat in the hot months can be tough. Keeping your children cool in the back is essential for keeping them safe and comfortable. The Noggle can deliver cold air from the front of the car to the back of the car in seconds. 

Window Shades

Window shades are helpful for keeping the sun out of your child’s eyes while they nap and enjoy the ride! They can also provide protection from damaging UV rays. 

Thinkbaby SPF 50+

Though you can’t get sunburned through a car window, you can still receive sun damage to your skin! This is because a car window only blocks out one type of UV ray. So, to keep your baby’s skin healthy on a hot road trip, coat them with sunscreen. 

Family Road Trip Checklist

Make road trips fun, safe, and easy with these 25 road trip essentials! 

Is your family gearing up for a memorable family road trip? The right items can take your trip from a stress-filled disaster to a serene and cherished memory. Once you collect your road trip essentials, make sure to stop every 2 hours to let kiddos stretch out! This is especially important for infants, but you can read more about road trip safety HERE

For more vehicle and car seat safety information, check out our Safe in the Seat blog and YouTube Channel. We have content to answer any of your child passenger safety questions!

Car Organization Ideas

Plus, you can get the latest updates and advice on our Insta. With such handy online resources, you can take us with you on your road trip too! (Don’t worry, we won’t be in any of the family pictures.) Have a great vacation!

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