Road Trip: 10 Items to Include in Your Travel First Aid Kit
Sunscreen, flip-flops, a great playlist, plenty of caffeinated drinks… These are the things we all think of when we are packing up for a road trip. One thing that is often forgotten about, however, is a travel first aid kit. No one wants to think about disaster striking while they are on vacation but, unfortunately, accidents and illnesses tend to happen at the worst possible times–including when you are in the middle of a road trip.
Whether you are traveling across the country or planning a day trip where you’ll stay a bit closer to home, it’s always smart to make sure there is a travel first aid kit in your car.
Not sure where to start? Keep reading to discover a few essential items to include in your travel first aid kit.
Chances are, the worst injury you’ll experience on your road trip is a small cut or scrape or a pesky hangnail. For this reason, it’s always a good idea to keep bandages in your travel kit. Stock up on a few different sizes and make sure your kit includes a few of each.
If your adventures tend to involve hikes or long walks, include some blister bandages, too. They can be real lifesavers! Read our article about preventing and treating blisters.
Gauze is helpful if you suffer from an injury that’s a bit too much for a normal bandage. It is also extremely versatile and can be used to clean wounds, absorb blood and help stop bleeding and be used as a dressing.
Make sure your kit contains individually wrapped gauze squares as well as a roll or two of gauze.
Surgical Tape and Small Scissors
Having tape and scissors ensures that you have a way to cut and attach gauze.
Elastic bandages are versatile first aid products that belong in every travel kit. If you have a cut, they can be used to hold gauze in place and apply pressure. They also do a good job of helping keep wounds clean. Elastic bandages can be used to stabilize sprained ankles or wrists, too.
Whether you get stung by an insect, pick up a splinter or end up with tiny bits of stone embedded in your skin after a fall, having a pair of tweezers means that you will be able to remove things as needed.
If you are injured while traveling, you may not have immediate access to an area where you can wash your wound. Having antiseptic wipes means that you will have a way to clean your injury before applying a bandage or dressing. These simple wipes can keep cuts from getting infected, so they are definitely worth keeping in your emergency kit.
Antibiotic ointments, such as Neosporin, are great inclusions for your first aid kit, too. They keep infections at bay and are said to help minor wounds heal faster. There are even antibiotic ointments that include topical pain medication.
Is there anything that ruins a road trip faster than a case of diarrhea when you’re hundreds of miles away from home? We don’t think so. And things like allergies, headaches and wicked heartburn from all the delicious meals you’ve enjoyed while on the road can put a serious damper on your day, too.
Stock your travel first aid kit with over-the-counter pain, allergy and anti-diarrheal medications to ensure that you’ll have what you need if you start feeling unwell. It’s always a good idea to include antacids, cold medicine and sleeping pills, too. You may also want to consider including an OTC antihistamine cream.
These products help take the itch out of insect bites and minor rashes without the drowsiness that accompanies many oral allergy medications. They can decrease your discomfort when you have a sunburn, too.
If you take prescription medication or wear glasses or contacts, make sure your first aid kit includes what you need. Include at least a few doses of your prescription meds along with a couple of pairs of contacts or an old pair of glasses. Depending on the types of medications you need, you may want to consider including documentation that states that the medicine is prescribed to you.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist to learn more about traveling with prescription medications.
Sometimes, road trips just don’t go as planned. Your car could break down and leave you stranded in a hotel for a few days, you could come down with an illness and not feel up to driving or–in a more positive twist of fate–you could end up having such a great time that you decide to extend your vacation by a few extra days.
Whatever the case may be, having some extra clothing in your travel first aid kit could be a lifesaver. Pack a few comfortable t-shirts and you’ll have extra tops to wear if you end up being away from home longer than anticipated. They’re great for layering, too.
Plain hoodies are great emergency items, as well. If you find yourself stuck outdoors or in your vehicle overnight, they will help keep you warm.
Pack all of your first aid items in a plastic bag or container and keep it in your car at all times. While you might pack it for a road trip, you could find a use for it the next time you are going grocery shopping or picking your child up from practice. Keeping a first aid kit in your car is always a smart idea!
If you want more ideas about First Aid, read our article about it here.
Sarah Cohen is a writer and stay-at-home mother of three children. She loves blogging, crafting, and spending time with her family. She also enjoys the great outdoors and hiking to explore new areas for adventure!