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The Ultimate Summer Road Trip Checklist

by Jessica Rotondi

Many of us will take to the highways over the summer to visit loved ones. Our destinations will be full of family and fireworks and food and flags, but when everyone in the country seems to have the same idea and road trip at once, the traffic can leave you feeling… well, unpatriotic at times.

Never fear! With the right snacks and tunes, the ride can be part of the magic. Here’s our summer road trip checklist and a free playlist that will keep you energized as the miles fly by.

Road Trip Snacks

With a few smart crowdpleasers, you’ll be sure to have something for everyone. Cheez-Its, Prince & Spring Fruitmojis, and Pirate’s Booty come in handy pre-portioned packages make them easy to grab on the go. Your passengers are already sharing the car; the least you can do is give them their own bag of snacks.

If you have picky eaters to entertain, try variety packs like this Planters Nuts Pack with salted cashews, honey roasted peanuts, and salted peanuts, or Nabisco Mini Snack Variety Pack featuring Ritz Bits crackers in peanut butter and cheese flavor, mini Nilla Wafers, Mini Oreos, Mini Chips Ahoy! cookies, and Nutter Butter Bites. Because snacktime should never be boring and variety is the spice of snacks.

Hydration Between Rest Stations

The only thing worse than being stuck in traffic is being thirsty and stuck in traffic.

Take the taste of summer with you on the road with Polar Seltzer in Ruby Red Grapefruit or Strawberry Watermelon.

Have little ones in tow? Apple & Eve Organics 100% Juice boxes guarantee a quiet ride as they sip — and you the peace of mind that you’re giving them 100% organic juice.

If you want to stick to water, VOSS Artesian Water fits beautifully in cup holders. (Pro tip: To keep it cold, try throwing in a handful of frozen berries like raspberries or strawberries — it’s as pretty as it is delicious!).

Road Trip Entertainment

Want to keep the kids occupied in the backseat but worried about too much screen time? Melissa & Doug sticker books and coloring pads are a great way for kids to work on their creativity the old-fashioned way. Bonus: Their creations can make beautiful gifts for friends and grandparents when they’re done. If you’re worried about a mess, these Water Wow! Reveal Pads come with a special water marker that reveals magical colors on the pad… not on the car. Namaste.

The Unexpected

Be sure to pack a Tide To Go Stain Remover pen for when disaster strikes or Dad takes a left turn a little too fast when you’re mid-snack. And for bigger cleanups, we always like to keep a roll of Prince & Spring paper towels for impromptu spills or makeshift plates or if the drive-thru forgot napkins. If there’s only room in the car for one thing, make it Prince & Spring disinfecting wipes for a cure-all to the germs you’ll encounter at those rest stops (shiver).

A Gift for the Host

Bottles of wine are welcome at most BBQs (check out our summer wine entertaining etiquette guide here), but if your host is dry, bringing bottled water like VOSS or sparkling seltzer like LaCroix can please the crowd and keep them cool — especially if guests are under 21.

The Ultimate Road Trip Playlist

Now that the snacks are packed, it’s time to get the playlist pumpin’. We created this FREE Spotify playlist with all the songs that celebrate America and the open road. Enjoy!

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