Out-of-state family reunion? Road trip with friends? Weekend at the beach or lake? Whatever your plans this summer, there’s a good chance you’ll be spending a lot of it cooped up in your car. So, to help you get by (and as an addition to our standard year-round car safety must-haves), we’ve put together the ultimate glove box survival kit for the summertime road warrior.
Here are 10 things you need to have in your glove box this summer.
1. Spare sunglasses
It can be hard enough to keep your focus on the road during long trips, and the blazing sun doesn’t help. Don’t be the driver who leaves their sunnies on the diner table at breakfast and has to squint for the rest of the journey. Instead, keep a back-up pair in the glove box, ideally with polarized lenses to help reduce glare. Check out this expert advice on selecting the right sunglasses.
Always, always have a roll of quarters in your glove box for unexpected road tolls, quick ice cream pit stops, and, of course, the parking meter outside said ice cream shop. And make sure to replace used quarters when you return home.
3. Hand wipes
These will come in handy when dealing with the aftermath of the aforementioned ice cream run. Have some kind of wipes at the ready to ensure you’re equipped to deal with any sticky messes, especially if you’re traveling with kids.
4. Sunscreen and lip balm
This one almost goes without saying. If there’s something you don’t want to be without during the hot summer months, it’s sunscreen. Keeping spare sunscreen and lip balm with SPF in the car will prevent you from having to pay expensive gas station prices in a pinch. And you should probably slather some on before you jump in the driver’s seat because UV rays are powerful enough to do damage through your car windows.
Having a flashlight in your car is a must all year round, but a headlamp can come in extra handy during the summer months. Want to perfect those campfire s’mores in the dark? A headlamp will be your best friend.
6. Multi-purpose tool
So you parked the car and are ready to crack open a drink and settle in for the night … only to realize you forgot to pack the bottle opener. No worries! You have your handy multi-purpose tool in the glove box. As well as a bottle opener and corkscrew, you also have scissors to cut rogue threads, a nail file to smooth down a rogue nail, and a toothpick for rogue foodstuffs after a BBQ. Never go on a road trip without one.
7. Bug spray
Don’t let mosquitoes get the best of you when traveling during hot summer months, especially in overgrown terrain or near standing water. A small can of insect repellent in your glove box can come to the rescue.
8. Spare toothbrush and toothpaste
If you’ve ever left your toothbrush in a motel bathroom, then you’ll agree. Don’t put a damper on your journey by detouring to find a gas station that sells toothbrushes — just keep one in your glove box instead.
9. Wireless speakers
From a beach bonfire to camping in the woods, great tunes are a must. Now you can bring the music with you wherever you’re heading, even when you’re on the road. These are CNET’s recommendations for the best wireless speakers.
10. Stain removal pen
Any chance you’ll be indulging in BBQ ribs, red wine, or s’mores? Trust us, you’ll be happy you brought it.
And don’t forget your insurance ID card
No matter where your car takes you this summer, make sure you’ve got your insurance docs on hand. If you’re an Esurance customer, you can download our app so you’ll always have your ID card with you.
Make road trips even better with Fuelcaster™
Another way to prepare before hitting the road this summer? Get Fuelcaster — the gas price predictor™. This free app predicts whether gas prices are expected to rise or fall tomorrow. That way, you can decide whether it’s better to fill up today or wait. If you need gas pronto, it can also help you navigate to the closest gas stations with the cheapest gas.