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Well, okay, you don’t have to have all of these in your car. But you may want to consider each item on our list – and then tells us in the comments below what we’ve missed!

Though I’d love to say that this list came after many hours of thoughtful list-making and planning – the majority of it came from experience and wishing that I had stowed this or that away in my van. So, I did.

Each time I vacuum and clean out the van, I go through my van essentials to see if anything has been used, lost, or misplaced – and then re-stock!

Must-Haves for Every Mom’s Vehicle

Tote: Most of the items on my list are kept in a tote like this. Other items have their own place in other nooks of the van.

mom essentials for car tote

Spare Clothes: I can’t tell you the number of times that clothes have either been stained or otherwise ruined for continued wearing. We won’t even get into the drenched and soggy tennis shoes on a cold day because there happened to be an intriguing stream of water nearby. Remember to include items such as: socks, shoes, shirt, shorts, pants, jacket, hat, gloves, and swimsuit. Because you never know when you’ll need to stop at the splash pad!

car power converter

portable phone charger

First Aid Kit: Purchase a pre-organized kit like the one below or put your very own together with the following items.

first aid kit car vehicle travel

Band-Aids in a variety of sizes, instant ice packs, Neosporin, Vasoline, tape, gauze, bandage wrap, pain reliever, non-latex gloves, first-aid scissors, tweezers, thermometer, etc…

coppertone sunscreen

Plastic Grocery Bags

car trash bag

reusable shopping bags

Travel Cups: Choose travel sippy cups for younger kids – and more traditional travel cups for older children.
Small Tote with Utensils: I keep a small tote with plastic spoons, knives, forks, straws, and ketchup cups. Comes in so handy!

travel scissors

travel nail kit

Personal hygiene items

car travel games

travel towel

Spare change
Blankets for car naps

travel outdoor blanket

emergency window breaker and seatbelt cutter

portable changing pad

Portable potty, refill bags, and wipes

bm what moms should have in their car van vehicle

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