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Official Exclusive Road Trip Checklist – Reliable and Proven!

Road trips are as American as apple pie. (Mmmmm, apple pie.) Prepare yourself with this reliable and proven road trip checklist, to make sure that you not only remember everything you need, but save money in the process!


You can’t have a road trip without using a little gas, am I right? Some families are even reluctant to take road trips because they worry about the cost of gas. Sure, it’s going up in price, but it still beats flying a family of four! Enter proven ways to save on this necessity!

1. Gas Buddy App or

This website has a trip cost calculator along with local prices for gas. The app is especially helpful while you are on the road. But, if you are super frugal, you can try to plan out where to get gas along the way BEFORE your trip starts.

2. Vehicle Maintenance

Use cruise control. Experts say that driving at a certain speed consistently will save you money. Also, try to avoid rush hour traffic as you plan your trip.

Make sure you have a spare tire. Enough said.

Pack a roadside emergency kit, and your car’s manual, and an empty gas canister (key word – empty). And jumper cables. Always have jumper cables.

Finally – have your car inspected before your trip, and make sure those tires are inflated. Check your oil. Check your coolent levels. Check all fluids. Check your air filter. And if you don’t know how to do any of this, then find someone who does. It will be well worth the money spent on this.

3. Don’t Forget

Don’t forget to make SURE you have your license and registration, and your car insurance policy. Consider travel insurance at this point as well, or getting a AAA membership.


Cars need gas, and people need fuel, too! This area is proven way to save money on the road. Try to eat out as little as possible and use these tips and tricks to save even more money!

1. Bring a Cooler

Bring a cooler and have everything with you that you need for meals. PB&J, turkey sandwiches, etc. All of that can be made on the road, and is a great way to not only save money, but time! You don’t have to stop and waste time in restaurants waiting for your food. Instead you can be putting the miles behind you and getting closer and closer to your vacation!

Adieu secret tip: Bring water bottles, and FREEZE them before you go! They will serve as ice for your cooler, and then water later on when they melt! Double benefit!

2. Snacks

You should never be buying snacks in gas stations! They are called convenience stores, people, not frugal-save-money-cheapest-prices stores. Make sure you bring a variety of snacks and that its something that everyone loves. Another tip? Prepackage the snacks into individually wrapped portions. It will help with convenience and also for the sake of mess (and your sanity!)

If you do need to stop and get food, then make sure to stop at a grocery store. It will always be cheaper there, and you can get a better selection of food.

3. Paper Plates, Utensils, Etc.

If you are eating “in” then you will need to remember to bring the paper plates, bowls, utensils, napkins, and condiments that everyone loves. Throw them all in ziploc bags – which you will need for your trip as well! If you want something fancier, then you can get a Picnic Backpack Bag, which has not only a cooler compartment built right in, but a blanket, and all of the essentials you need (even salt and pepper shakers!)


1. Camping

2. Air B&B

3. Hotel Chain

Final Tips for your Road Trip Checklist:

  1. Use a credit card if you can afford it – to at least get points back and/or cash back for all this gas/food/entertainment that you are spending money on.

  2. Call your credit card to make sure to let them know you are going on a trip, so that your credit card doesn’t get frozen while you are on the road.

  3. Umbrella. Always a good idea to have one of these in your car.

  4. Maps. As in, PAPER maps.

  5. Speaking of paper, bring some toilet paper. It’s always handy.

  6. On that note, hand sanitizer. You can make some yourself, and it’s much safer and healthier. Wet Ones are always good too!

  7. If you are going to the National Parks, look into getting a National Parks Pass.

  8. Make a set of spare keys. Put them in your wallet and purse. You’re welcome.


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