My father’s car was the car you’d want to be in if ever you found yourself in any type of a bind. Whether your car broke down, someone got hurt, or you needed a jump, his car, affectionately named “Galdo,” was prepared!
I really do try to keep my car well-equipped with items that may come in handy when I’m out and about. Some are necessities, such as jumper cables, and other items have nothing to do with the car but everything to do with being prepared for a variety of situations I may find myself in!
Knowing what to put in a survival kit is even more important in the winter, when bad weather can strike at any moment. If you’re not sure what you should be loading in your car this winter, check out my car emergency kit list to get some ideas!
Emergency kits aren’t just for cars. Make sure your home is stocked with essentials, too, by checking our guide on how to make a DIY emergency kit!
1. Roadside emergency items
Make sure your car’s emergency kit includes the basics like road flares, a flashlight, jumper cables, a spare tire, and a jack. Additionally, it’s good to have a whistle in the event you need to get someone’s attention and are unable to yell for help.
2. First aid kit
Keep a first aid kit handy, or at the very least a variety of Band-Aids, disinfectant, and purified water.
It’s also a good idea to have a dose or two of any prescription medications you or a family member take. This is helpful if you get stuck somewhere and need to take your medication to stay on schedule!
3. Winter essentials
Keep road salts in your car for potential help on an icy road — kitty litter may also work — and if your tires use chains, have extras in case of heavy snow.
For icy windshields you should carry a windshield scraper and small broom. A small shovel may also come in handy.
An extra blanket and a couple sets of water-resistant gloves should also be in your car during winter months.
4. Odds & ends
You may not think much about the odd office supply right now, but you never know when you might need a pen, batteries, paperclips, tape, or even scissors!
There have been so many times where I’ve needed to write something down but couldn’t find a single pen in my car. It’s also a good idea to stash a couple of envelopes and some stamps in your car kit, too, just in case you have a last-minute bill to send out.
Slip these ballpoint pens into your glove box and save $2 on any one uni-ball product that’s 4-count or higher.
5. Snacks, snacks, snacks
It’s always a good idea to have snacks readily available in case you get stuck — that’s stuck in traffic or even in the snow!
This tip has been a lifesaver for me, and I even keep bottled water in my car now, too. If you have kids, a quick snack fix can diffuse a bad temper or dry some tears, too!
Keep your kiddos (and you!) from getting hangry while you’re out running errands with these quick snack recipes for kids!
6. Everyday essentials
What do a roll of paper towels, disinfectant wipes, walking shoes, socks, and a jacket all have in common? You never know when you might need them!
I keep all of these items in my trunk, stashed away in a small bag. Not to mention there’s an umbrella and a light rain jacket in there, too, just in case the weather changes suddenly.
7. Personal care items
Always be prepared! You never know when you might have to make an extra stop to see a client or rush to a last-minute dinner date.
I keep personal care items like a toothbrush, toothpaste, and even deoderant handy in my car for emergencies like these.
Keep those pearly whites sparkling even on the busiest of days! Stash a tube of toothpaste in your car and save 75 cents any one Crest Pro-Health Stages or Crest Kids toothpaste (4.2-ounces or larger)!
8. Entertainment for kids
If you have children, then you know driving them anywhere can be a challenge!
Keep them entertained and save your sanity by creating a kid-friendly kit loaded with games, books, and coloring books.
I also like to keep outdoor items like a Frisbee or ball in my trunk in case we decide to stop, stretch our legs, and have some fun!