For those that despise clutter and prefer to travel light, it is necessary to carefully consider the most useful and practical items to carry in the car. There are a variety of helpful things to keep in the car that go beyond safety and emergency items. Here are seven of the worthwhile items to consider having ready and available in the vehicle at all times:
Emergency kit – A practical addition to the car trunk is a standard emergency kit, which comes complete with tire gauge, flashlight, energy bars, water, poncho, radio, shovel, first-aid kit, etc. For the flashlight, a crank-handle model is a more practical option than the battery-powered units because it reduces the chance of being inconvenienced by flat batteries. Also, a couple of mylar/emergency blankets are great to store in the glove box in the event of an emergency. These blankets are tiny and cheap.
Umbrella – Umbrellas are small, cheap, and certain to benefit any vehicle owner that is unfortunate to get caught out in a torrential downpour.
Phone Charger – A cell phone charger unit designed to fit the cigarette lighter can give a fast and convenient solution to charge the almost depleted phone battery. Alternatively, a solar phone charger is just as effective at putting life back into the cell phone.
GPS Unit – A reliable GPS navigation system is certain to help with navigating the one-off or rarely traveled routes. Make sure to include the power cord in the vehicle for the navigation system to avoid having a dead GPS. Also, include a detailed map of the local area in the car, which will ensure you can still navigate if the GPS fails on you.
Long Shelf-Life Snacks – If you already have an emergency kit, this should include protein bars or MREs. But, other simple and convenient food items can be kept in the car for snack time, such as crackers, dried fruits, or small packs of cookies. Most of these types of snacks stay fresh well in a vehicle and a practical choice to fill the hungry stomach for the young or old.
Money – A small amount of emergency money in small bills and change is certain to help in a variety of situations, from meter change to tipping a tow truck.
Shovel – A compact or collapsible shovel is certain to help those that live in regions that experience the colder climate conditions and occasional snowdrift.