After I got my first car, I had a teacher tell me that I would lose my life in it. Sure enough, I have lost plenty of things in my car only to rediscover them long after I needed it.While my car is generally littered with items I don’t need, there are a few items that no car should be without.
- Required documentation. Think of what a cop will ask you when you get pulled over: license and registration, please. Your driver’s license should not live in your car, but you should never drive without it. Your registration is the paper that comes with your license plate sticker. Caught without it and you will find yourself paying a ticket, which could higher your cheap car insurance rate you got from those cheap car insurance companies. Another important document is to have proof of insurance. Driving without proof of insurance will get you slammed with another ticket. And let’s be honest, car insurance companies offer such low rates, you have no excuse not to have your car insured.
- Jumper cables. Never be without jumper cables. A simple mistake like leaving the car light on can drain your battery within hours. As long as you have jumper cables, you can use any car (with the permission of the owner, of course) to jump your car back to life. Make sure you know how to attach the cable (red goes on red, black on black) before you start getting the battery juices flowing.
- Car jack and extra tire. Nothing says bummer like a flat tire. A bummer can turn into a nightmare if you are far away from a service station without a spare tire. Most cars come equipped with a spare tire in the trunk. Make sure you have a car jack (to lift the car) to assist with the spare tire change. Changing a tire can be messy so it is smart to keep some paper towel or an old rag in the car for messes.
- Go-pack. You never know where you will be when disaster strikes. If you spend a lot of time away from home during the day (like at work), there is a good chance it could happen away. Away from your emergency kit. You should always keep an emergency kit in your car. My car emergency kit contains a flashlight, poncho, flare and duct tape. My personal kit is much more like a 72-hour kit. It contains simple snack foods for survival, water, cash in small bills, etc. I also have a change of clothes. Hey, getting stuck on the side of the road wearing high heels would be a nightmare. I have a pair of old tennis shoes in case I need to do some walking.
- Mini trash can. This suggestion is less for survival and more for aesthetics. For some reason my car becomes a catch all for trash. And then it multiplies when I am not looking. Keep a small mini trash can (maybe an old, cleaned out Pringles can) to catch the small pieces of trash.