Road Trip Planner: The Wishlist

Tuesday, October 25, 2016 - 3:31pm

This may be the most important  list of all. Sure, figuring out what to do is important, and you don't want to leave any of the behind, but traveling is all about hoping and making dreams come true, so no road trip would be complete without a wishlist.

These are the items you could probably do without on your road trip, but you really don't want to leave them behind. And then there are a few that make great presents (just sayin').  If you've got a holiday or a birthday or an anniversary coming up? Lucky you.

Road Trip Planner Wishlist


Unless your car comes equipped with one, it's good to invest in a separate GPS. Your cell phone may not have service and the battery could die. We've had good luck with . They now come with unlimited lifetime maps so you don't have to worry (as much) about the map being inaccurate.

Walkie Talkies

Consider these a back-up for the talking part of your phone. If you get separated you can still communicate with these babies, old-school style. They're not even too terribly expensive. has 22 channels and a 23-mile range and runs about fifty bucks.

Picnic Basket

Keeping a picnic basket in the car means that when you see a perfect vista for lunch you can pull over and enjoy it. You'll also have the utensils to eat in your room, if you'd like. We've got one that has a inside so we can spread out anywhere.

Collapsible Chairs

See an outdoor concert as you're driving through that cute town? Keep some chairs in your trunk and you can relax with the locals. While you can get a chair with a foot rest or a canopy, all you really need is a  (it'll pack smaller, too).

Electric Cooler

This is on my own wishlist. Imagine leaving the ice behind because you've got a cooler you can plug in to your car. There are (since I haven't used one yet I can't personally recommend one).

A Bigger Car

Just kidding! (Although to fit all of this in, plus the cooler and snacks and suitcases, etc., we could probably use one...)

A Big, Huge, Giant SD Card

This, for me, is actually a need, not a want. Whether you're taking photos with your phone or your camera, make sure you've got enough memory to capture everything you want to remember. I always have my laptop and external hard drive with me, but downloading is a pain so I keep a 32gb card in both my cell and my DSLR. This is especially true if you want to shoot any video.

This list is going to keep growing, so I'd like to hear from you - what's on your road planning wishlist?

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About Theresa
Theresa Goodrich's picture

Hello Fellow Traveler! I'm the Emmy-winning founder and publisher of The Local Tourist. I've got insatiable curiosity, wanderlust, and an incurable need to use my words. Thanks for joining me as I explore "drive by towns." I hope you'll pull over and stay awhile!

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