Ready for the best road trip of your life? Not sure what the essentials are that you should pack in the van? Take it from the experts who completed a 45-day tour of Australia… We learnt the hard way so you don’t have to!
I don’t know what we would’ve done without this App!! Download it right now…
You can pinpoint where you are in real time and set your criteria for where you want to sleep that night. The App will then show you places where you can park up for the night that match your needs! Choose whether a site has to have a shower, BBQ facilities, drinking water or dump points; even tell it to only show you sites that are free. Read the reviews from other travellers to check the site’s viability, see how far away you are and then plan your driving hours that day accordingly. LIFE. SAVER.
2. Window Mesh or Mosquito Repellent
Luckily for us, our campervan came with mosquito screens on the windows so whenever we had a light on at night, we weren’t eaten alive! Some of the other road-trippers we met along the road weren’t so lucky… Australia can get pretty humid, so you’ll want your windows open at night. Either get some stick-on window mesh (like THIS) or accept that part of your evening routine will be to cover every inch of your body with 50% Deet Mosquito repellent. Either way works!
This is an obvious but easily forgotten necessity! You can’t always find places to charge your phone on the road, so make sure you have a battery powered flash-light to hand when your trusted iPhone runs out of juice.
4. Toilet Paper
After being on the road for a while, all bathroom etiquette is thrown out the window. Girls: You will pee whenever you need to along highways, lay-bys or alleys. Make sure you have your own toilet paper stash! Trust me.
5. Dry Shampoo
If you’re looking to complete the road-trip on a serious budget, you may not want to splash out on the expensive camp-sites that actually have showers every night. Therefore, it may be several days between hair washes and dry shampoo will be your beautiful saviour!
6. Fridge Door Lock
If you can find one – BUY IT.
If not, DO NOT put heavy, open milk cartons in the door of the fridge… You will turn a sharp corner, the door will fly open, the milk will spill everywhere in your campervan and the smell of stale milk will haunt you for days. Cue absolutely livid boyfriend. I’m speaking from experience here.
7. Books, Card Games or Netflix Offline
Sunshine is not always a guarantee and for several nights we were stuck in the van in a storm! If you’re not anywhere near a town to park up and find a bar or restaurant to hang at, you have no choice but to entertain yourselves. Books and card games definitely stopped us from losing our minds. We also made sure to download shows and movies on the Netflix app so we could watch them offline at a later date.
*Extra Tip: Get a GPS holder so you can stick your phone up whilst watching! No-one likes losing blood flow to your arm.
8. Ear Plugs
Both wild animals and other travellers can be pretty noisy at campsites. You’re also sleeping PRETTY close to your friend/significant other, so ear plugs are KEY!
9. Music Playlists
Our campervan had Australian radio which was great, but we also bought an Auxiliary Cord so we could play our own playlists from our phones/iPods. If you have an older van, make some CDs before you leave! Nothing beats a good road-trip karaoke sesh.
10. Phone Power Bank
A lot of campsites we spent the night at did not have power outlets available (as we usually chose the free ones!) We, therefore, relied heavily
11. Eye Mask (or window curtains!)
‘Cause who wants to have the sun beaming on your face at 6am?
12. The Responsible Things
‘Adulting’ has to set in at some point and you should probably make sure you have your car’s manual in case a strange light decides to turn on whilst driving, a first aid kit and road-side emergency items.
Because you’re in Australia and you’ll need snacks. Goodbye bikini body!
with your future road-trip buddy so you don’t forget any of the essentials!