Travel Tip: Serious Snack Pack

Hey! I am in Texas visiting the fam, but I've got a couple more travel posts for those of you still preparing to travel to see family (or for preparing for the ride home). The drive from Virginia to Texas usually takes me about 21 hours, including gas, food, and bathroom stops as well as napping stops when necessary. That much time in the car means you need some serious snacks to keep you going.


I like to have a variety of snacks. Is this overkill? A little. Will I eat all of this on my way there? No! But, anything I don't eat comes with me on the return trip, and none of this stuff is going to go bad in the two weeks I'm in Texas. Here I've got a bag of chips, healthy popcorn, and Cheez-It's for crunchy snacky type things, almonds for some healthy fat and energy, a chewy and a crunchy box of granola bars for different moods and something a little more substantial, and a bag of sour candy and a box of chocolate-covered raisins for a healthier chocolate fix. 


 For the cooler, I have Chobani tubes. They say they're for kids, but they're easy to eat in the car, low fat, healthy, and gives you a bit of dairy, so it's a great more filling snack. I also have a bag of carrots which are a no mess snack and a pack of apple and caramel dipper for a dessert-type option.


Especially if you're driving alone, anything you can reasonably do to make things easier on yourself while you're driving, you should do. I went ahead and put the Cheez-It's in two quart-sized bags, which causes me not to have to fuss with the box and the bag in the box. Plus, this will keep them fresher longer. The almonds and candies did not come in resealable bags, so those are the kinds of things where you open it, do your best to fold it shut while driving, put in the snack bag, and then end of with a bunch of stuff at the bottom of the bag that you throw up. No thanks. I put the granola bars in bag as well just so they wouldn't fall out of the box and be hard to find quickly.



 I threw all of these dry snacks in a reusable shopping bag. I went ahead and opened the chips and shut them with a clip so I wouldn't have to open them in the car. I wasn't sure if I was going to end up opening the popcorn or not, so I left that as is. One of the things I like about this bag is that it zips shut, so when I get to where I'm going, I can zip the whole thing shut and throw it in my trunk and not worry about it until I get ready for the return trip.


All of the beverages and refrigerated snacks go in a little cooler. I bought a little 6-pack of water bottles (I don't usually use plastic water bottles but I will use them on a trip) and put three of them in the cooler, two flavored sparkling waters, a 4-pack of the Starbucks Frappuccinos, and a Gatorade. I also put the carrots in a plastic bag and the yogurt pouches in a plastic bag since the box would get all mucked up by the ice. Pro tips: bagged ice works better than these big blocks of ice from the trays. I didn't have room in my freezer for a bag of ice and didn't want to stop and get one on my way out of town, but these definitely melted much faster than bagged ice does.


In the front little pocket of the cooler I put a couple of plastic grocery bags for trash, some straws (I use these with the Starbucks coffee since the have wide mouths), and some napkins.


Cooler co-pilot. My cooler sits on the passenger seat and the snack bag sits on the floor space in front of it. Everything is within easy reach this way. When I've traveled with other people, I've put the cooler in the middle of the back seat which still makes it pretty easy to reach. I do have a small car though.

Between all of these things I have more substantial food in case I have to go a while without stopping for real food, snacky stuff, sweet stuff, healthy stuff, hydrating stuff, caffeinated stuff...all the stuff! I will stop for lunch and dinner, but I never have to get snacks from the gas station or anything, which saves me time and money. What snacks do you like to travel with?

Yours Truly, Jen

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