Road Trip Essentials: Packing Tips and Tricks for Student Travellers

Start your next trip with confidence as we delve into road trip essentials with packing tips and tricks for student travellers hitting the road.

 Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a cross-country trip, proper packing can make or break your road trip experience.

In this blog, we’ll cover everything from efficient packing to must-have items for a smooth journey. Find out how to maximise space in your backpack or suitcase, prioritise essential items, and ensure you’re prepared for any twists and turns along the way!

A group of friends on a road trip

Plan Well

As we always mention, planning is crucial to the success of any plan and a road trip is no different. 

Once you have decided that you are going to be taking a road trip to a destination, it is great to immediately start considering how many people you will be travelling with, how many vehicles you are taking, how long the journey will be and most importantly the routes for this journey. 

If you are travelling with multiple vehicles, then it is a good idea to decide who will be travelling with whom so you all can plan the rest of the journey keeping those travellers in mind. 

Make sure to communicate all of this to the rest of the group so everyone stays in the loop and you can avoid any confusion at the last moment.

Girl holding her phone


Budgeting is an important step to make sure that you have a trip without financial worries. Even before planning anything else, you should decide how much you are comfortable spending on the trip and mutually discuss this with everyone involved. 

Always make sure to factor in fuel costs since this is often overlooked by many.

Once you have decided on an amount you can then start purchasing snacks and other items based on the decided budget!

Person Journalling

Pack Your Essentials

If you are travelling for a weekend or just a couple of days, you are likely not going to carry a large suitcase.

You will have to pack your bag lightly while making sure that you have everything you need.

The first aspect of this blog on road trip essentials is your necessities. This includes clothes, toiletries, cash, ID and so on. These are things you absolutely cannot miss before you head out the door.

Person packing their suitcase

Snacks and Hydration 

Although not as important as your necessities, snacks can be among the road trip essentials that make your road trip far more enjoyable. 

Be sure to consider the tastes and allergies of all of the travellers involved so that everyone gets to have something that they like. 

You can also opt for finger foods so that you can stay clean while still enjoying delicious snacks on a long road trip. 

A bonus tip from us is to carry chopsticks to have quick bites and this way you won’t even have to get your hands dirty!

You should also include juices or soft drinks so you can keep yourself hydrated throughout the trip.

Friends eating in a car on a road trip

Safety Items 

The most important item in our road trip essentials list is an emergency kit. 

Although we would all hope that you have a safe trip throughout, accidents always happen. 

Whether that is a small scratch on your leg or if you have caught a cold, an emergency kit with all first aid essentials will always come to the rescue. 

Be sure to advise all the travellers to bring any medication that they have been prescribed for allergies or other specific needs that they might have.

Emergency kit being stored in a car

Vehicle Essentials

Vehicle essentials are also extremely vital to make sure that you have a smooth trip.

This includes everything from spare tyres, jumper cables, and basic maintenance tools that might be needed.

You should also note any emergency numbers that you can call if you need help at all. You wouldn’t want to be stressed about this if at all a situation requires you to call for help. 

Read this article on Essential Things You Should Keep in Your Car to create your own checklist

Person rolling an extra tyre

Comfort Items

Moving on from the serious bits, you can also pack cute and cosy items like blankets and pillows with you so that everyone can feel comfortable during the journey. 

Since your journey is likely going to be long, it is best to make yourself as comfortable as you can. 

Travellers packing blankets on a road trip


There is absolutely no road trip without a banging playlist. We would even argue that it is the best part of it. 

So be sure to craft a great playlist specifically for this road trip with everyones favourtie songs in mind.

Or for a change take turns playing each person’s playlist and get an idea of what different people’s tastes are. 

You can also pack simple games like UNO so everyone can stay occupied throughout your journey!

Person shuffling uno

Embrace Spontaneity 

The best part about road trips is being spontaneous with it.

While it is important to stick to the plan so you can reach the destination on time, spontaneity is what makes a road trip special. 

Whether that is stopping at a cute cafe on the way or stargazing, be sure to embrace all of it while you are together. 

Always be mindful of everyone’s needs and safety, and enjoy the journey!

A group of friends laughing on a road trip

We hope that you found this blog on road trip essentials helpful. 

As you prepare to hit the road with our packing tips and tricks, remember that flexibility and adaptability are key to a successful road trip. 

Embrace the unexpected, cherish the journey, and make memories that will last a lifetime. Safe travels!

Follow us on Instagram @urbanstudentlife and let us know your favourite road trip essentials!

If you are looking for accommodation for the next year, then you are in the right place. Visit our Urban Student Life website and browse through a range of properties all across the UK.  We are sure you will find something that caters to all your needs! 

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