Over the river and through the woods — down the highway into 4-lane, standstill traffic.

From gridlocked freeways to overcrowded rest stops, hitting the road for the holidays isn’t always a holly jolly experience. When your predicted 2-hour drive stretches into 4 hours, you’ll be more than ready for grandma’s one-and-done cocktails once you finally reach your destination.

On the bright side, the shorter workweek thanks to Christmas is pretty sweet, and there are ways to make your time on the road a little more festive. Consider these cozy and convenient take-alongs for your car before you brave the dreaded trek home for the holidays.

home for the holidays

1. Mason jar travel mugs

Swap out your standard to-go cup for the sentimental charm of a mason jar travel mug. Whether you’re sipping a pumpkin spice latte or mint hot chocolate, your vintage-inspired mug’ll look and feel cooler when it’s wrapped in a fun, felt koozie.

2. Sheepskin seat covers

Avoid the shock of starting your trip by shivering on a freezing seat. Sworn to keep you toasty in colder temps (and cool in the heat, believe it or not!), genuine sheepskin seat covers are a smart investment that’ll make your ride comfortable all year.

3. Cool Christmas tunes

With so many great covers of Christmas songs, why settle for the versions your local soft rock station plays on repeat for 3 straight months leading up to New Year’s? Create a playlist of cool spins on old classics!

Whether you prefer a poppy Christmas ballad or a punky ode to maintaining the holiday spirit, tailor your soundtrack to your discerning taste by peppering in less-than-traditional tunes with nostalgic numbers.

4. App-solute essential: Audible

Laugh, cry, or sit on the edge of your car seat in suspense with one of the latest novels to hit the New York Times Best Sellers list. “Really? Driving while reading?” you ask. Of course not!

Audible’s a fantastic app for lovers of literature and anyone who appreciates a good story — especially when you’re on the go! A modern update to the book on tape, Audible lets you choose from over 150,000 titles to download to your Audible library. Then simply connect your mobile device to your car’s speaker system and enjoy! As if that’s not awesome enough, your first 30 days are free!

5. Ready to ride: winter checklist and car kit

It’s no surprise that some of us heading home for the holidays won’t see the sentiment in the classic Christmas carol, “Let it Snow!” While a winter wonderland makes a beautiful setting once you’ve reached your destination, the black ice, blistering cold, and blurred visibility that can accompany a snowstorm could cause dangerous driving conditions and major damage to your car.

Be one step ahead of Mother Nature before you back out of the driveway with a cold weather car maintenance checklist and a winter essentials car kit.

Travel hacks


about Emily Rose

During her time at Esurance, when Emily was not giving the nitty gritty details of insurance a much needed makeover, she enjoyed scouring thrift shops for cool vintage finds and taking her role as a proud Pom mom much too seriously.