Cool(er) Tips for Long Car Trips
The next time your family takes to the highway, make sure the goodies you've packed survive the heat and kids' impatient fingers. Instead of putting all your egg-salad sandwiches in one basket, try dividing up perishable foods and cold drinks into two coolers:
- Destination cooler: Pack meals and picnic supplies in a large, well- insulated "Destination Cooler." Keep the closed cooler off limits while traveling to insure food is fresh and cold upon arrival.
- Travel cooler: Pack beverages and snacks in a cooler small enough to sit on the floor of the vehicle or between the seats.
- Use block ice (store-bought or homemade) instead of cubes. Because there's less surface area for melting to occur, block ice lasts longer.
- Refrigerate or freeze all items prior to packing.
- Drinking Ice: Freeze water or ice tea (sweetened to taste) in plastic soda bottles or sports bottles. They'll serve as ice blocks and contents can be consumed as they thaw. Use as an alternative to freeze-packs.
- Line the bottom of your cooler with bubble-wrap for added insulation (and to avoid breakage). Pack coolers in layers with sheet(s) of bubble wrap between layers for added protection and insulation.
- To avoid the "Lake Effect" of melting ice waterlogging the cooler and all it's contents, pack all ice in waterproof containers or resealable plastic bags.
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