You’re counting down the days until your family vacation. The warm weather has finally arrived, and in a few weeks you’ll be loading up the car and taking the kids out for some fun in the sun. While car trips can be a bore, you’ve packed a ton of entertainment to keep everyone happy.
As a parent, you know that being prepared is key to any emergency. That’s why you’ve helped everyone pack their bags for hot and cold weather and made sure that you have enough diapers, blankets, cold medicine (just in case), and snacks for the trip. You even checked the car’s emergency kit to make sure your jumper cables, engine oil, flashlight, and first aid supplies are still fully stocked. Is there anything you forgot?
What Else Should I Have in My Car’s Emergency Kit?
While you’re already leaps and bounds ahead of most drivers, there are a few items you should add to your car’s emergency car kit before a vacation, including:
- A large umbrella – Keeping an umbrella in the car is a good idea year-round. It can keep you dry during last-minute storms, but also protect you from the heat of the sun or a snowstorm if you’re waiting for help on the side of the road after your car breaks down. A brightly-colored umbrella can also increase your visibility while shielding you from the elements.
- A whistle – You may have to drive long hours or well into the night to make your destination. Many cars veer off the road as drivers fall asleep or lose control, landing in ditches or thick trees and hiding the wreck from the road. If cell phone reception is spotty, a simple neck whistle can call people to your location more effectively than shouting.
- A car cell phone charger – Many parents never travel without packing a cell phone charger. However, these are usually wall plugs for charging in hotels. A car adapter that fits into a lighter or charging port in the car is endlessly useful—just make sure you have one for each type of cell phone in your family.
Last Minute Checks Can Save Lives!
In addition to packing your bags, you should always check the tires, brakes, windshield wipers, and all car systems before you get on the highway. You may be in a rush to get on the road, but that’s not an excuse to cut corners on safety. It’s better to find out that a tire is leaking in your garage, than have it blow out somewhere along I-70. In fact, it is a good idea to make sure you have an inflated spare tire and jack.
You can help your kids stay safe and entertained on long trips by downloading our Kids Safety Coloring Book. Click the link on this page for as many free printable copies as you need!