7 Travel Gadgets You Need for Your Next Road Trip

Road trips are the ultimate bonding experience with friends. It’s also the perfect getaway for one when city life gets too hectic.

What’s more, road trips are far less strenuous than years past. There’s less worry about getting lost, thirsty, hungry, and just plain aggravated.

What’s changed?

Today’s road-trippers enjoy the benefits of travel gadgets. Forget paper maps, scary payphones at night, and bouts of boredom. Gadgets help you feel safe and sound so that you can enjoy your trip.

Learn more about the best travel technology for road trips.

1. Google Maps

Remember your parents moving to the side of the road to look at a map? How about those conversations with locals about directions?

You could still depend on the kindness of strangers when you’re lost. Fortunately, Google has a safer option available.

Google Maps functions as your own personal assistant. A friendly voice guides you toward your destination. It lets you know when a turn is coming up and how many miles ahead until the next one.

Google Maps also lets you know when you’ve made a wrong turn. This feature is so important when you’re lost, especially in a new area at night.

Of course, you can always print out your Google Map directions to be on the safe side. You can access Google Maps offline when you’re out of data, though. However, only driving directions are available offline, not walking nor bicycle directions.

How to Use this gadget

Launching Google Maps is pretty straightforward. If you have issues, try restarting your phone and relaunching maps.

Just type in “Google Maps” in your web browser search bar or click the maps icon in your Google account menu.

Once loaded, click on the arrow icon for directions.

Add your starting point and destination. The directions will automatically generate. If you’re accessing maps from your phone, you can use the voice assistant to direct you toward your final destination.

If you’re using Maps on your desktop, you can send text directions to your phone. However, you can’t use the voice assistant.

2. Extra Smartphone

Bringing your smartphone sounds like a no-brainer, but it doesn’t hurt to bring a second phone on your road trip.

You could use your second phone for emergencies in case your primary phone loses battery power. In these cases, it also helps to have an extra battery charger handy. You can also find self-powered cell phone chargers.

Most cell phones will let you dial 9-1-1 without unlocking the phone. Many drivers like having an old-school flip phone as their emergency phone because they don’t have to wait for it to load.

Safety is one reason to bring an extra phone. There’s also the entertainment factor.

Smartphones are like mini computers. They store music, movies, podcasts, games, and more media. You may want an extra one if your friends want to play some games in the backseat.

3. Hotel and Motel Booking Apps

Peace of mind goes a long way on a road trip. There are so many things you don’t have to worry about now.

You don’t have to worry about finding a vacant motel or hotel in the middle of the mind. You don’t have to worry if a motel will take your dog or not. You can ensure your motel has free cable and internet too.

Hotel and motel apps take the hassle out of booking travel lodging. Nearly all motel and hotel chains have apps that let you view rates, check amenities, and book rooms on the road. You don’t even have to talk to a customer service agent.

4. Ergonomic Pillows

Have you ever seen airplane travelers carrying u-shaped pillows?

These pillows are ergonomically designed to let passengers sleep on planes without neck pain.

You can learn a thing or two from your fellow plane passengers. These pillows are perfect for road trips, especially for sleeping in the passenger seat.

There are more ergonomic pillow shapes for traveling. Some pillows wrap around the front. Other pillows let you rest comfortably face-down.

5. Wireless Hotspot Travel Gadgets

You don’t have to be glued to your smartphone when you’re not driving.

Buy a wireless hotspot router before your road trip. These routers convert the internet network on your phone into a real wireless network. Hotspots let you enjoy the internet on your laptop or tablet without using free WiFi at a cafe.

Hotspot routers come in handy when you’re filming road trips. These gadgets make it easier to upload media files on the go. Some mini routers come with USB ports for instant file transfers.

6. Portable Multi-device Chargers

Backup battery-powered phone chargers are essential. It’s not convenient for your twenty other gadgets.

Grab a multi-device charger before packing up the car. You can find these at most retailers. Most chargers power up to four devices, which include four USB ports.

Multi-device chargers are handy for videographers on the road. You need fully powered devices when you’re editing in a hurry. They’re also great for road trips with friends.

7. Travel Itinerary Apps

Spontaneous road trips are fun. However, a little planning makes for a better experience.

Are you in the planner in the group?

Choose a travel itinerary app that you like. Travel apps help you plan the perfect road trip. You can organize all your lodging, meals, directions, and dates in advance. These apps are handy when you’re driving to a music festival or college orientation.

There are plenty of apps and sites for traveling tips too. These sites are packed with hidden gems and once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences. You may get a rare glimpse of a famous event or discover a hidden oasis.

Hit the Road!

Road trips are all about making long-lasting memories. Don’t let inconveniences get in the way.

Think about the experience you want to have. Which travel gadgets can help you create that experience?

Remember these tips as you plan your trip. Check out the blog for even more ideas for travelers.