Our list of winter road trip supplies you need to pack will help with safety, comfort, entertainment and eating while driving to your destination.
A successful road trip takes planning and organization. Be sure you have a road trip supplies checklist that includes all the items you need to pack to make the vacation a success.
A road trip isn’t as simple as loading up the car, filling the tank, and driving to your destination.
During the winter, many of us take holiday road trips with kids. The travel time is more enjoyable for the entire family when the kids have everything they need to entertain and take care of themselves.
Before you head out on a winter road trip in the USA, check out this list of must-have winter road trip items to pack for your next adventure!
Some of the links on this site are affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, we may earn a small commission – at no extra cost to you! Read the full Disclosure Policy.
How to Prepare for a Winter Road Trip
Any successful road trip take planning and organization. But winter road trips have the additional factor of unpredictable or bad weather.
Here are some tips specifically for a road trip in the winter.
Service Your Car for Winter Travel
Make sure the car is prepared for winter travel for all types of weather:
- Wiper blades
- Tire air pressure
- Car battery
- Headlights and tailights
- Fluid levels
We recommend you keep the gas tank level near full as often as you can when driving in the winter.
Do you have roadside assistance like AAA to call if you experience car problems?
A roadside service provides peace of mind if you get stranded.
Watch the Weather
Always check the forecast to know the expected weather for the route you’ll travel to your destination.
You can adjust the route, or avoid driving, if the weather conditions are bad or even too dangerous for driving!
Patience is required for winter road trip travel. You could experience delays due to road closures or bad weather.
During the winter, it’s important to note any lodging reservations that require check-in during certain hours. Some late check-ins could mean extra fees.
If possible, make reservations that are cancellable so you can change plans if needed due to travel delays.
Warm Winter Clothing
Be sure you can access the warm winter clothing you might need to use to stay warm “just in case”.
- Insulated jacket
- Fleece jacket
- Winter hat
- Winter gloves
- Winter scarf
- Waterproof boots
Winter Road Trip Supplies to Pack
Road trips in the winter require a bit more planning for “what if” situations. You never know if you’ll be sitting in traffic or on the side of the road with car troubles.
Here are a few of the basic travel essentials you’ll want for winter road travel:
Winter Road Trip Accessories
Here’s a list of road trip accessories needed for safety or in case of emergencies:
- Car emergency kit
- First aid kit
- Windshield de-icer
- Snow brush + ice scraper
- Portable car battery jump starter
- Collapsible snow shovel
- Traction mats for snow
- Portable phone charger
- Flashlight with extra batteries
- Basic tool kit
- Electric car blanket
- Emergency blanket
Check out these road trip accessories for kids specifically for family travel:
Road Trip Accessories to Stay Organized
Road trip car organization is so important, especially when traveling with kids!
Road Trip Coolers
Having the right road trip coolers will make all the difference!
- Electric cooler for the car (Some coolers you can use an Use the AC Adapter to plug in your hotel room as a second fridge, purchase separately).
- Road trip coolers
- Lunch box cooler
- Reusable ice packs for coolers
Road Trip Food Containers
- Refillable water bottles
- Collapsible water bottles
- Formula dispenser
- Lunch box containers
- Stackable snack containers
- Spill-proof catcher cups
- Silicone bib
- Squeeze pouch spoon
- Food pouch topper
- Travel wet wipes
- Ziploc bags
Road Trip Snacks and Food
Check out these snack and food ideas that are perfect to take on a road trip!
- Road trip snacks and food
- Road trip snacks for adults
- Road trip snacks for kids
- Healthy road trip snacks
- Healthy road trip food
Road Trip Toys and Activities
Here’s a list of fun ways to keep the kids busy on a family road trip:
- Road trip toys for babies
- Road trip toys for toddlers
- Road trip games for older kids
- Travel toys for younger kids
- Road trip journals
- Road trip activity pack
CLICK the graphic below to get the free Road Trip Activity Sheets!