Staff Picks: Our Editors Name Their Road Trip Essentials

Sunglasses, coolers, THC coffee beans and more

June 7, 2019 8:10 am
Photo by Tabea Damm on Unsplash

Nota bene: If you buy through the links in this article, we may earn a small share of the profits.

Welcome to InsideHook’s Staff Picks, a compendium of what our editors are digging recently. This week, before we embark on the (new) great American road trip, our editors are naming the one thing we can’t hit the road without.

Lowercase x American Trench Sunglasses
I remember my parents taking us on long car trips across the Midwest during the summers. I don’t remember “why” exactly, just me ignoring all that flat land outside and pouting in the backseat, try to read, listening to my Walkman and glaring at the back of mom and dad’s heads. I’m older now, but I still don’t like car trips and don’t drive. So when I have to take a backseat, I want shades so I can sleep, see my phone without squinting and generally just look disaffected and cool. So I’ll wear these: AT’s colorful new shades, which resemble a classic ‘50s Ray Ban. Bonus: They’re 20% off now with the code DADSHADES. — Kirk Miller, Nation Editor/Managing Editor

Kiva Confections Chocolate-Covered Cannabis-Infused Espresso Beans
Sometimes I get tired on long drives. Sometimes I get bored. Two birds, one stone(r). — Danny Agnew, Creative Director

Strumpshaw, Tincleton & Giggleswick’s Marvellous Map of American Place Names
You could use our map of the 150 best road-trip destinations in America to wander your way around these United States this summer. Or you could just visit a bunch of small towns with irreverent names. Ever catch a movie in Butternuts, NY? Or bathe in the waters of CA’s Lake Dingleberry? Take a canoe down VA’s Big Lickinghole Creek? Because those are all real places — you just need this map to help you get there. — Walker Loetscher, Editor-in-Chief

OtterBox Portable 30-Quart Soft Cooler
A few months after my girlfriend and I started dating, we thought it would be fun to road trip from Minnesota to California. We were both just about broke but figured we could make it work if we pinched pennies, so instead of stopping at diners and other roadside joints, we packed a cooler full of PB&Js and trail mix. Cut to me having a full-blown hangry meltdown on a beach in San Diego. I credit that cooler (and the kind souls along the route who restocked it) with saving our fledgling relationship. But if I were to do it again, I’d 100% get this backpack cooler from OtterBox so I could bring the snacks and bottles of regional soda (Ale-8, anyone?) when we ventured away from the car. — Alex Lauer, Senior Editor

This Is a Long Drive for Someone with Nothing to Think About by Modest Mouse 
I have many, many, many playlists dedicated to driving around in the summertime. Plenty of Neil Young, Stax Records stuff, Little Walter, The Cramps and plenty of other sounds that really add to the all-American pleasure of driving with the widows down and taking the long way to get somewhere. But if I ever do a drive that ends up stretching out into the night, you’re damn sure I’m playing this album. It’s the one I totally consider to be the best by this pretty quintessential indie band, and I won’t hear any arguments over it. — Jason Diamond, Features Editor

Takeya Insulated Water Bottle
As a wise man recently wrote, there is no excuse for casually drinking bottled water. That includes on road trips. Instead of popping into the gas station for a couple of plastic bottles of Poland Spring, plan ahead and bring your own water in one of Takeya’s stainless steel creations. Insulated to keep your beverage of choice cold for 24 hours or warm for 12, these leak-proof bottles come in a variety of sizes, are easy to clean and come powder coated for a sure grip so your sandaled big toes won’t be in any danger of death from above. — Evan Bleier, Staff Writer

Fujifilm Quicksnap Flash 400 Single-Use Camera with Flash
The summer my family decided to rent an RV and take a 12-hour road trip to New Brunswick, Canada (please do not ever put your family, or anyone, through this), I bought a disposable camera to take on the trip. Every summer since then, I’ve picked one up. Yes, this is my one manic pixie dream girl trait I will never get rid of. Usually I don’t finish the roll before the summer’s end, leaving the camera in a bag for like a year until I discover it again, take a few more pics, wait a couple of weeks for the film to develop and finally relive all the moments I forgot I had captured. I know it all sounds corny, but I love it. Plus everyone looks better on film. — Logan Mahan, Editorial Intern

The InsideHook Newsletter.

News, advice and insights for the most interesting person in the room.