Lauren Out Loud’s 2012 Road Trip Essentials: Win a $100 Cadillac Fairview shop! card® gift card
If you’ve been following my adventures for a time, you may have noticed that I like a good little jaunt away from the city.
You see, one of the biggest advantages to driving over flying, aside from the whole “being able to step out of the vehicle mid-trip without dying” thing, is no baggage restrictions. You can bring as many things as you want to! Tweezers and full-sized hairspray incuded. Oh joy and rapture…
Also, cars don’t have crying babies in them (unless you bring a baby with you on your road trip for some reason… in which case, you might want to consult a different guide. This is NOT that kind of road-trip.)
They aren’t always easy, but road trips can be incredibly rewarding. And the stories! Ah, the stories…
I would encourage every person who’s never done it to get out there experience the joy of the open road at least once this summer. You won’t regret it. And the key to a successful ride in the car? preparation. You don’t need a final destination in mind, but you do need to come correct.
Thus, I’ve put together this post highlighting ten “essentials” that no fashionable young female should hit the road without, sponsored by Sherway Gardens in Toronto. You can find everything in this post at the West End mall.
Bonus: They’re giving one laurenoutloud.com reader a $100 Cadillac Fairview shop! card® gift card to get your own engine roaring.
Want to win? Find out how at the bottom of this post, na na na…
** Please note that a solid iTunes playlist, passport, cash, makeup, toothpaste, sunscreen, socks and all necessary life-sustaining medical devices (don’t forget your puffer, kid!) are a given. You should already have these things anyway, right?**
… And then more sunnies. Backup Sunnies. Trust me, if you drop one pair into the lake and crush another with your knee, you’ll be happy you brought an extra pair.
You, looking the crypt keeper after driving for 10 hours: “Thank you, Lauren, for reminding me to bring sunglasses.”
Me: “No worries. Sick shades.”
The Bvlgari bad boys pictured above from Sunglass hut are fabulous if you can afford $1,020 shades. And if you’d rather spend your hard earned scrilla on something else, Vogue Eyewear’s knockoffs look almost EXACTLY the same for a fraction of the price.
Look at you, all Thelma and Louise! Cat eyes are hot right now.
You could also do like me and visit Aldo Accessories to load up on inexpensive pairs because you have a tendency to lose / break / lend out all of your sunglasses anyway.
Aldo has been my go-to sunglasses joint for years (aside from that place in Kensington market… you know the one.)
2. A roaming data plan for your smartphone:
Stop by the Telus, Rogers, Bell World, Fido, Wind, or Virgin Mobile booth (depending on who your carrier is) to inquire about a data package for the duration of your trip.
You can pay a one-time fee to get reduced rates for the duration of your trip, and even if you only use your phone a moderate amount you’ll save TONS in roaming charges. You’ll be happy you did this when your phone bill isn’t $9,999 next month.(True story: See “Lauren O’Nizzle in Cannes, May 2011”)
If you don’t have a smartphone yet (?!?!?) go to the Apple store. This one essential is probably more important than everything else you’ll bring with you. iPhone = lifeline.
3. Cute, comfy car wear.
Allow me, first and foremost, to declare that jogging pants are not okay to wear, under any circumstances, ever. Not even when you’re jogging. Wear yoga pants like a sane person for the survival of our species, please!
That said, you can’t exactly wear your freak’um dress on the long road to somewhere. So we shall meet somewhere in the middle. Comfy doesn’t have to be frumpy.
4. A Moleskin
Trade in your MacBook for a notebook this weekend. Use it to take directions, names, nummmbahs… Doodle while you talk to your car-mates. Jot down the little things you’d like to remember about these times when you’re 80. There’s something so very real and charming about the classic Moleskin notebook. May it inspire you on your journey as it has so many others:
5. ALL OF THE SHOES
If there’s one thing you can you never pack too much of, it’s footwear.
Bring shoes to cover any potential conditions you could find yourself stuck in. Rain, hail, unexpected hotties at the service center, etc. You can get creative with truck-stop T-shirts if you really need to whip together an outfit in short order, but unless you’re rolling with Salvatore Ferragamo himself (which I doubt you ARE because he’s DEAD), you’ll need to have kicks for multiple occasions on hand.
At the very least, pack:
- One pair of sassy driving flats (I still want the Marc by Marc Jacobs mouse flat. So bad.)
- One pair of sneakers (Low-top Chucks are a personal favourite: )
- A statement stiletto like these JW Anderson x Aldo Rise beauties:
- Colourful Rain boots
- A nice chunky espadrille (Who needs flip flops? Seriously?)
6. An HD video camera
I take most of my still photos with the iPhone these days, chiefly because it’s always in my hand and at the ready with instant sharing capabilities. That said, none of the phones I’ve tested have been able to stand up to what’s available out on the camcorder market right now.
On the leaner side, this Hello Kitty Camcorder is super cute and very cheap. You won’t be able to do much with it and the quality won’t be stellar but… Hello Kitty!:
If you don’t know how to work with video, a road trip is the PERFECT time to start learning. Have fun recording points of interest and adventures with your friends. It could just turn you on to a cool new hobby. At the very least, you’ll have something to show your kids when you talk about how fun their mom used to be one day or something.
7. A HUGE scarf.
My friend Kate has this magical, ginormous scarf that pretty much acts as anything you need it to. Pillow, blanket, chic accessory, makeshift cardigan, head turban, tourniquet (we didn’t need to use it as one, but had somebody chopped her arm off it would have made a great one).
This pretty pink 75″ Square Scarf from Juicy Couture is perfect.
8. A WEAPON
When Casie and I were driving back from Texas, we had to pull over at one point and take a nap in a Starbucks parking lot. When we woke up, a man was outside the car and it was terrifying. Yes, he was the shop’s manager and, sure, he was only trying to open his store, but if he had attacked us we would have been completely defenseless save for our high kicks.
I don’t know if I could ever actually shank a dude, but I’d certainly feel more secure on a cross-country road trip with something like this in the car:
9. A great, head-turning bag:
So, this isn’t necessarily something that’s exclusive to road trips… heck, you might be better off bringing a knapsack, but I’d be remiss not to include Fendi’s B. Fab in black leather with rainbow stud and rainbow Pequin lining available at Holt Renfrew in this roundup.
FCUK’s wonder wood clutch is cool too for those (like me) with leaner budgets.
Not the most practical road tripping bag, but it’ll surely start some conversations with strangers. And isn’t that what this whole thing is all about?
All day, erryday. Full spectrum, non-comedegenic, as high an SPF as you can handle.
You know what’s prettier than a deep golden tan? Cancer-free, wrinkle free, smooth as a baby’s bottom skin. Pale is the new tan, after all.
Consult the experts at Sephora to find a suncreen that’s right for your needs and skin type.
Win a $100 Cadillac Fairview shop! card® gift card to spend at Sherway Gardens!
If you’re jonesin’ for something on this list, enter to win $100 towards it from Sherway Gardens! All you need to do is help me decide where to drive next. Have you been somewhere awesome recently? Know of a good deal on white water rafting? Have a dream spot you’ve been eyeing?
Give me your road trip recos on Twitter! All you need to do is Tweet @laurenonizzle and @sherway_gardens including the hashtag #RoadTripRecco.
I’ll be pulling in some of my favourite Tweets and announcing the winner at the end of this month.
- The contest closes at midnight on MAY, 31, 2012. The winner will be selected randomly and announced on JUNE, 2, 2012. The winner will be notified by e-mail.
- This giveaway is open to readers located in the Greater Toronto Area only.
- There are no prize substitutions. Prize does not include travel and cannot be redeemed for cash, romantic moonlit dinners or anything else.
**Disclaimer: I was financially compensated for this post. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.**