If you’ve been driving long distances for a long time, you will have a pretty good idea of your ‘go to’ kit for the journey. But if you’re new to the job, it can sometimes be a challenge to figure out what you’re going to need on the road and what you won’t be able to take. So this month we bring you a guide to the long distance HGV drivers essential kit.
Long distance HGV drivers are on the road for long periods of time, so having a supply of toiletries is essential. This should include disinfectant, wet wipes, shower gel, shampoo, a razor and some toilet roll (which can double as tissues). Flip flops are a good option for when you’re using service station showers, and you should also try and keep a big-ish bowl with you for washing your pots and pans, and yourself as well if you need to.
Not The Kitchen Sink
On the road you might not always be able to find somewhere to eat for the night. We recommend keeping a kettle, mug, teabags and coffee with you on the road. Having some powdered milk knocking about isn’t a bad idea either, in case you run out of milk or it goes bad. A big pack of bottled water is also useful as you can make sure you are hydrated and you will always have something to brew with! Some drivers like to have a small portable stove and a pan so that they can cook healthier meals on the road, but that’s really a personal preference thing.
Food on the road isn’t always the best, or the healthiest option out there. If you can bring a supply of food from home, you avoid the dreaded ‘truck stop sushi’ scenario. If you’re journey is too long to have fresh food from home stored all the way, keep a stash of long life foods such as cereal and tinned foods I your cab – just don’t forget your can opener!
On a long haul trip you never know what might happen, so it’s always a good idea to have a few essential tools with you. Pliers, a hammer, a spanner, screwdriver and duct tape are all useful things to have in your toolkit for an emergency.
A couple of changes of clothes are a must on long journeys to keep you in good health and feeling positive. You should also have a bag of ‘practical’ clothing items hanging around for all eventualities. So a thick wool hat and gloves, thick socks, waterproof trousers and a waterproof jacket will keep you protected no matter what the weather.
Once you’ve finished your driving for the day, you’ve got a lot of downtime. Sitting in service stations can get really boring, so make sure you have some entertainment with you. A portable DVD player or a laptop loaded with movies and games is a good option, or a tablet if you prefer. If you have a subscription service such as Netflix or Amazon Prime this can provide hours of entertainment, or you can load up on podcasts or books to keep the boredom at bay.
Most HGV’s have a built in bed in the back, but these can be pretty uncomfortable, especially in an older vehicle. To make this more bearable, bringing a comfortable duvet and pillow with you can make a lot of difference. It can make your bed feel more like home and really improve your night’s sleep. Don’t forget to pack some earplugs too, so you can block out the sound of traffic and sleep soundly!
And that’s it! There are obviously other things you might want to include in your kit, but this list just covers the basics. If you think we’ve missed something off or want to tell us about your essentials, get in touch or leave a comment!