Family unloading car in driveway

How to Get Your Car Ready for a Road Trip

by Carrie Skogsberg

Are you and your family planning to hit the open road for an adventure? Whether you’re driving a few towns away or across the country, it’s a good idea to make sure your car is in tip-top shape. Performing a little car maintenance and preparing an emergency kit for your car can help save time, money and potential headaches on the road. 

Here’s how to get your car ready for a road trip.

Car maintenance checklist

  • Check the condition and air pressure in your tires
  • Test your wipers and wiper fluid
  • Make sure your headlights and taillights are working
  • Change your oil and filter
  • Prepare your emergency car kit

What to put in a car emergency kit

  • Spare tire, tire iron and car jack
  • Spare car key
  • Spark plugs
  • Owner’s manual, vehicle registration and insurance cards (Pro tip: Download the COUNTRY Financial mobile app to access your insurance card and roadside assistance info)
  • Tow rope
  • Blankets and an extra coat

Consider Roadside Assistance Coverage

Talk to your insurance agent about adding roadside assistance coverage to your car insurance. Roadside assistance reimburses you for the cost of road trip mishaps like flat tires, towing and locksmith services. 

Stay safe and alert on the road

  • Use cruise control – steady speeds will help your gas mileage
  • If you’re tired, pull over and rest. Don’t try to muscle through with caffeine!
  • Put down your phone. Never text and drive and use hands-free when making calls. 

Check on your car insurance coverage

If things go wrong, your COUNTRY Financial car insurance is there to help get you back on the road again. Learn more about what car insurance covers and how to file a car insurance claim


Updated 3-14-23

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COUNTRY Financial® is a family of affiliated companies (collectively, COUNTRY) located in Bloomington, IL. Learn more about who we are.