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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UC Berkeley chapter.

Over spring break, I went on a long road trip from Los Angeles to Utah, visiting Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon with my family and friends. During this trip, I realized that in order to survive long hours in the car, there are some non-negotiable essentials you should always have on hand. Here’s a list of my top five road trip essentials:


Snacks are obviously a must-have on a road trip. Stock up on your favorites before you leave, or stop by a gas station on the way to your destination. A mix of salty and sweet snacks will ensure you have a variety to pick from — chips, candy, chocolate, beef jerky, and fruit are all great options to satisfy different cravings along your journey.


Bringing a good pair of headphones and having a solid playlist is a major road trip essential. Listening to music will help make the mundane parts of your trip more enjoyable. Make sure you download your playlist in case you don’t have Wi-Fi in certain areas!

Bonus Tip: Don’t forget to pack a portable charger for your devices to ensure they remain charged for the entirety of the trip!


Having a comfortable pillow is crucial for a restful sleep during your journey. My family loves to get on the road early for road trips, so I usually sleep in the car. My squishmallow was the pillow I brought during my most recent trip since it’s really soft and not too big. If you’re not driving, bringing your favorite pillow will allow you to get some rest wherever you go.

Bryce Canyon
Original photo by Elnara Pashazadeh-Monajemi


Staying hydrated is extremely important during road trips since we often forget to drink water while on the road. Especially if you’re driving, keeping water or a hydrating beverage, like Gatorade, will ensure you don’t get dehydrated.

Bonus Tip: Keeping a reusable water bottle handy reminds you to drink regularly throughout your journey!


On a road trip, you encounter many germs, like at gas stations and ATMs. Protect yourself from viruses by keeping a travel-size hand sanitizer in your glove compartment. This simple addition to your road trip checklist will help keep your hands clean and minimize the risk of picking up harmful germs along the way. 

Hopefully, this list will enhance your road trip experience and help you feel more prepared to hit the highway!

Elnara Pashazadeh

UC Berkeley '27

Elnara is a first year student at the HC Berkeley chapter. She is currently a staff writer and marketing team member. Elnara has experience in social media and writing. She enjoys writing beauty related articles. In her free time she loves to read, bake, listen to music, and go on walks on the beach.