November 29, 2023

Mid Designer

Breakaway from the pack

6 Best Car Gadgets for Road Trips Under $50

Road trips with friends and family are always fun as you get to spend quality time with your loved ones. But, what if we could make your road trips more joyous with a few unique gadgets? That’s right, if you’re planning to set out on a long drive sometime soon, then you should check out some of the best car gadgets for road trips.

best car gadgets for road trip

From fancy LEDs that will set the right tone in your car, to keeping your drinks cold in the summer, we’ve covered a wide range of road trip gadgets. Since all of them are quite affordable, you can buy a few or even all of the products from the list.

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Alright, let’s take a look at all the cool car gadgets for a road trip.

1. Govee Car LED Lights

Driving over long distances can feel like a task. Thankfully, Govee car LEDs can spruce up the ambience of your car, thereby making dull chores fun. To that end, these RGB lights can be fastened in and around your car. They even come with smart functionality and you can control them via your smartphone.

The Govee car lights have adhesive strips on the back. So, you can either stick them near the pedals for ambient lighting, or you can fasten them onto the dashboard to light up the entire car. The company ships four strips and you can customize the lighting arrangement to your liking. Once you’ve placed the lights, the built-in car charger needs to be plugged into your car to power the LEDs.

Govee’s smartphone app can be used to control the lights. You can choose from 16 million colors and several lighting modes. The LEDs also ship with a music mode wherein, the lights sync up and pulsate with the beats of the music playing in your car.

Many users in the reviews section can be seen singing praises of the Govee Car LED lights. In fact, per some long-term users, the lights offer good dependability and despite routine use, are still going strong. Since they’re inexpensive, some buyers even recommend getting multiple strips to cover a larger car like an SUV.

2. Drop Stop Car Seat Gap Filler

While this isn’t really a tech gadget, it can certainly save your tech from getting lost in your car. You see, most folks are bound to drop their phone, earbuds, or even something like a ring between their car seats. Thankfully, the Drop Stop car seat gap filler is here to save the day.

Drop Stop got popular after the product was showcased on Shark Tank. It’s made of neoprene which allows it to expand or contract according to the space in your car. Essentially, it works with just about any car or truck and closes the gaps between seats. Consequently, the concoction will keep your personal belongings from getting wedged between or under your seats.

Another use-case is that if you eat in your car often, you won’t end up spilling food under your seats or in small crevices that are hard to clean. This makes it easier to vacuum your car and keep it tidy. With close to 60,000 reviews and an impressive overall rating, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that this is an excellent product that has surely impressed a lot of consumers. The idea is simple yet it will save you from a lot of hassle.

3. VacLife Air Compressor Tire Inflator

The last thing you would want when you set out on a rod trip is to end up with a flat tire. But, in case you do, the VacLife air compressor can be a huge savior. It connects to the 12V socket in your car and can inflate a tire in minutes.

While that’s good and dandy, you should also know that the VacLife Air Compressor is quite compact. As such, you can easily carry it with you for long trips. You can even place it in the glove box of your car since it doesn’t occupy much space. More notably, the air compressor can seamlessly fill up your tire, irrespective of whether you have a hatchback, sedan, SUV, or even a truck.

There’s a smart auto cut-off feature in place that determines the right air pressure for your tire. Once the pressure is reached, the compressor shuts off automatically. The brand also provides a multi-purpose nozzle with the compressor that can even inflate other products like a football, mattress, bicycle tires, etc.

To no one’s surprise, the device has amassed over 30,000+ reviews, most of which are positive. What’s more, users emphasize that the VacLife Air Compressor can be set up and deployed easily. Rest assured, the device is surely a must-have before you head out on a road trip.

4. Pro Chaser 400W Power Inverter

You might want to charge multiple electronic devices while you’re on the road. Be it your laptop or a large music player to amp up the party in your car, the Pro Chaser 400W power inverter can do it all.

While car chargers with USB-PD are quite powerful, they don’t offer the same output wattage as a dedicated power outlet. Plus, you’re limited to connecting devices with a USB cable. If you wish to use or charge a device that comes with a full-fledged plug, you won’t be able to do so using a simple car charger. That’s where a power inverter like the Pro Chaser 400W comes in clutch.

It steps up the 12V output in your car to 110V AC, thereby allowing you to connect just about any appliance you want. Have a gaming laptop that you want to charge? No problem. Going wild and carrying a PS5 along with a monitor on your road trip? Don’t worry, the Pro Cahser inverter can power both devices seamlessly. You also get two USB-A ports on the side to charge smaller devices.

Interestingly, none of the reviews mention any downsides or cons. Suffice it to say, the device is a reliable accessory and an excellent companion during long road trips.

5. Hotlogic Mini Portable Oven

It’s only natural to pack food when you set out on a road trip. But, most of the time, the food ends up turning cold, especially over the course of a longer trip. Well, we don’t know about you but we can’t stand cold food. Thankfully, Hotlogic’s mini portable oven is the perfect solution for the problem as it allows you to heat up your food in your car!

The Hotlogic Mini is like a small bag that you can store in your car at all times. When it’s time to eat, just place your food inside the bag and connect the mini oven to the 12V socket in your car. Wait for a couple of minutes and your food will be ready to consume! It’s as simple as that. The Hotlogic mini oven is certainly useful during winter when you want to heat things up.

Apart from road trips, this gadget also comes in handy if you’re on the road for a large part of your day. That’s partly why the majority of the reviews for the product come from truckers or taxi drivers who are on the road pretty much all day. And all of them say that the Hotlogic Mini is a godsend if you want to enjoy hot meals. Imagine drinking a hot bowl of soup while you’re on your way to your destination!

6. AstroAI Mini Fridge

If the Hotlogic Mini was a godsend in winter, the AstroAI mini fridge is a must-have in your car in summer! It can accommodate up to six cans of drinks or can even store fruits and other perishables.

The biggest advantage of the AstroAI mini fridge is that whenever you get thirsty, you can pull out a drink from the refrigerator to quench your thirst. In fact, you can even store water in the fridge so that it stays cold throughout the trip.

There are thousands of reviews for the AstroAI mini fridge and while most of them are positive, there are some genuine concerns pointed out by a few users. Firstly, some tall cans fail to fit into the fridge so ensure you measure the can of your favorite drink before copping the fridge. Another user mentions how you need to have adequate space on your car’s dash or near the charging point to place the refrigerator in a stable manner. A slight shake and there’s a chance the fridge will tip over.

On the upside, the brand bundles multiple adapters with the device. So, you can even use the fridge at home by replacing the 12V adapter with a standard power socket. This way, the fridge can be used to store cosmetics in your bedroom or even milk for your baby.

FAQs for Road Trip Car Gadgets

1. Can I charge my laptop in my car?

If you have a laptop that charges at a low wattage, you can charge it with a MacBook Air car charger that outputs at 30W. If you have a powerful laptop that requires more power, we suggest getting the Pro Chaser power inverter from the list above.

2. Can an air compressor fix a punctured tire?

No, an air compressor cannot fill air into a punctured tire. You’ll first have to fix the puncture yourself before using the air compressor to fill the tire with air.

3. Will devices like the inverter, fridge, or oven drain the car’s battery faster?

While all these devices run on your car’s battery, they don’t pull as much power to drain out the car battery entirely. However, we suggest using the devices in moderation just to be on the safer side.

Enjoy Your Drive

These were some of the best car gadgets for road trips that won’t burn a hole in your pocket. More importantly, they can make your drive more enjoyable. Some gadgets can even come in handy in case of emergencies. So, which gadgets are you buying for your car? Let us know in the comments below.