The best accessories and gift ideas for car owners!
Dec. 8, 2022
Dec. 8, 2022
Are you looking for the best accessories to complete your car setup? Or maybe you want to spoil your family and friends with original gift ideas this Christmas?
Before loading up your shopping cart, you must weigh your options to choose the right products. That’s where we come in! In this special holiday article, we’ll teach you how to make the right choices.
Winter is coming
And you, too, must be ready! We guarantee you’ll feel safer on the road when you have the right tools to get out of just about any situation.
- Shovel. This is an absolute necessity. Look for a collapsible shovel that can fit in the trunk of your car. It’s easy to use and won’t take up much space.
- Traction plates. Although they may not be the first thing you think of, they can save you a lot of trouble if you get stuck on an icy road or in deep snow. Look for a foldable model to save space.
Windshield cover. If you dread the frustrating task of de-icing your windshield every morning, invest in a windshield cover to help you get on the road faster.
Snow brush. You can’t use just any old snow brush. Some models come with advanced features to make this activity (almost!) enjoyable.
- Car seat warmer. This is an excellent gift for someone who doesn’t have heated car seats. You can choose from various models with different styles and features.
- Jumper cables. It’s a good idea to always carry jumper cables in your car. In many cases, doing so can save you a trip to the garage or a call to the tow truck. To be safe, ensure you understand how to use them.
- Booster pack. If you often find yourself in situations where no one can help you jumpstart your car, invest in a booster pack. This is especially useful if you have battery issues and aren’t sure if your car will start every morning. Be careful to choose a model that fits your car’s battery needs!
- Car escape tool. This tool is a must, and it can save your life! Make sure it’s kept in a very accessible location. Don’t store this tool in the back seat; it must be easy for the driver to reach.
- Dash cam. To improve your safety and make insurance claims a breeze, a dash cam is a game changer! If someone else causes an accident, you’ll have proof it wasn’t your fault.
There are many models to choose from at varying price points. At the very least, look for a camera with the following features: a wide-angle lens with a visual field between 140° to 180° and full HD or 4K resolution.
Emergency blanket. Very small to store so it can be kept in your glove box!
*If your schedule is time-sensitive, you can also get a complete winter kit : it will save you money and shopping time!
The useful Christmas list!
USB chargers and cables
It’s a well-known fact that electronic devices have become an integral part of our everyday lives, but they use a lot of power! First things first, determine what type of charging port you have in your vehicle: either USB port or cigarette lighter socket.
Option 1 : If your car is equipped with a USB port, simply buy a charging cable for your phone, tablet or other mobile device. Here’s how to choose the right one. To make the right choice of cable, take into account two elements: the cable length and durability.
First, cable length is important if you want people sitting in the back to be able to use it
too. A sufficiently long cable will allow them to recharge their devices themselves throughout the journey.
Then, by choosing a good quality and robust cable, you will avoid having to buy new ones often! In Canada, winter temperatures can quickly go from one extreme to the next. If you’re thinking about buying or gifting someone a new USB charging cable this December, it must stand up to the cold.
On top of cold temperatures, external factors can damage your cable and electronic devices. We recommend choosing a cable that’s covered in a thick yet flexible material.
Moreover, make sure the connector tip is solid and that it can put up with being pulled or twisted. The cable should stay in one piece if someone sits or steps on it in a pair of winter boots or if liquid (like coffee) accidentally spills on it.
You can also purchase cable clips for long cables to prevent them from constantly dragging on the floor.
Option 2 : For the cigarette lighter, in addition to the cable, you will also need to get a compatible socket. You can
then choose a cigarette lighter socket offering several USB ports, so that you can charge several devices at the same time.
Also, if you have an older car, with no Bluetooth or AUX, choose an FM transmitter compatible with
your phone. This way you can also listen to your favorite music.
- Phone mount
Many people use their phones as GPS devices to get from point A to point B—they make driving a breeze, no matter what app you use.
If the voice on your navigation app is hard to hear and the directions seem a bit sketchy, it’s good to have visual support to let you know (in real time) where you are on the road.
There are different models to choose from:
- The kind that stick right on top of your dashboard and can be adjusted to fit the width of your device using two spring arms
- The kind that can be suction cupped to the inside of your windshield
- The kind that clip straight onto your vehicle’s interior air vents
- The kind that have a wireless phone mount and charger
Remember that handling any mobile or electronic device while driving is forbidden. Check the current laws in your province.
- Car keychain for forgetful people. Misplacing your car keys wastes a lot of time and energy. They could be anywhere, like at the bottom of your bag, in a forgotten pocket, in one of your many jackets or on the car floor. It’s like they’re hiding! Fortunately, different products exist to help you quickly find them, like Tile Mate and Apple AirTag.
- Stick-on shades. Window sunshades are a great investment, especially for summer road trips or if you have children sitting in the back seat.
- Car windshield sunshade. A windshield sunshade is extremely useful in summer and strongly recommended! We suggest keeping one in your car on hot days.
- Small trash can. There’s nothing more annoying than sitting in a dirty car that’s littered with garbage. Keep your car clean and tidy with a compact garbage can that’s easy to install and reach. However, don’t use it to dispose of smelly trash!
- Back seat organizer. Whether you’re transporting around kids or backseat passengers, a seat organizer is a must-have, especially on road trips. Long rides are much more enjoyable when everything is easily accessible and organized, including games, books, snacks and beverages.
- Car trunk organizer. If you’re like most people, your trunk is probably messy, especially if you carry around a lot of stuff like cleaning supplies and safety tools. To avoid things rolling over and making noise in the back while you’re driving, you can get an organizer specially designed for car trunks!
- Seat protectors. Keeping your car seats clean and tidy can be tough, especially if you have leather seats. Once scratched, it can be difficult to restore their original shine. To save you from worrying, invest in high-quality seat protectors. There are several options on the market, so make sure you get ones that fit your seats.
- Warming travel mug. Coffee drinkers will love this one. Heading to work with a warm coffee will be much appreciated on cold winter mornings!
The gift that keeps on giving!
If you’re the type of person that leaves all of their holiday shopping to the last minute and never knows what to buy, an Ultramar gift card is the perfect solution. Most people need to put gas in their vehicles and would be more than happy to do so (free of charge) with a prepaid gift card! It’s painless to pick up at the pump, easy to gift to family and friends and extremely useful.
Ah! The winter holidays. The perfect time to unwind, move your body and spend quality time with family and friends. Set the mood with some nice decorations, delicious hot chocolate and music, and get into the holiday spirit!