REDI Roadie Emergency Kit Review: This Belongs in Every Car
Whether you’re driving close to home or heading out on a long road trip, having the proper supplies on hand in an emergency can minimize damage from injuries or even save a life. REDI makes first aid and emergency supply kits that are ideal for carrying in a vehicle. They currently make three kits: The Roadie (reviewed here), the Roadie+, and the Roadie Pro+, each packed with useful items and thoughtfully arranged for easy access.
The $135 Roadie kit comes packed in a Cordura Nylon bag and is filled with a mix of supplies for administering first aid, handling minor inconveniences, and everyday needs. The bag is made from a bright orange-red fabric that’s easy to spot in your vehicle’s trunk or cargo area and comes with accessories for various mounting options. The bag also has MOLLE-compatible webbing on its back for attaching items on its exterior.
When you first open the bag, you’ll find a second semi-transparent zipper bag labeled “Everyday Essentials.” It’s got a variety of items you’ll want to keep in the front of your car, so they put it in a separate bag. Depending on how cramped your glovebox is, you might have to put it in your center console storage bin. Inside, the Essentials bag includes disinfecting wipes, a stain remover pen, tissues, breath mints, dental floss, peppermint lip balm, sticky notes, a pen, hand sanitizer, sunscreen, a mirror/hairbrush combo, a lint roller, and an eyeglass cleaning cloth.
The main Roadie bag contains the first aid and emergency items. It has many of these arranged into resealable bags, clearly marked with labels like “Wound Prep,” “Skin Treatment,” “Medication,” and “Bandages.” Each bag has a list of supplies and quantities on its back as well, along with a scannable QR code for ordering refills of items you’ve used. The outer bag is well organized, using a mix of mesh pockets and elastic straps. There’s also a 54-page guide to administering first aid that covers a number of health emergencies.
I won’t tally up every item in the kit. But the list is extensive, including ointments, analgesics, antihistamines, bug repellant, burn gel, sterile eyewash, electrolyte powder and gel, a digital thermometer, an LED flashlight, tweezers, bandages, gauze, first aid tape, scissors, a CPR face shield, and an instant cold pack. You’ll also find a disposable urinal and a rain poncho. At just 9.4″ x 8″ x 3.3″, it includes an impressive number and variety of supplies for its size. The complete list is available on the Roadie product page. Keep in mind that the kit doesn’t come with emergency supplies for your vehicle, like road flares or jumper cables. That stuff isn’t in REDI’s wheelhouse.
While you can certainly toss the Roadie kit loose in the back of your vehicle, it’s much better to mount it. For many cars, including mine, the easiest option is the included Velcro mounting pad, which attaches securely to the carpeted surfaces found in car trunks and cargo areas. Once you stick the Velcro to the carpet, attaching and removing the bag is a matter of clipping a plastic buckle.
There’s also an option for mounting the kit on the back of a headrest using a long Velcro strap. It works well, though it takes a bit more effort to secure and remove the bag when it’s installed this way. REDI also includes a short strap that you can hang from a hook or a carabiner. This comes in handy if you want to bring the kit with you when camping. Just attach the strap to a loop on your backpack, and you’re good.
For those wanting a more comprehensive kit, The $350 Roadie+ adds a quick-release trauma pack with the most critical supplies for treating bleeding, along with other upgrades like a tourniquet, emergency blanket, duct tape, paracord, zip ties, matches, and more. The hard-shell Roadie Pro + kit goes for $425 and includes a total of 250 emergency items. That said, the reasonable price and efficient size of the Roadie make it an easy purchase for every vehicle in your driveway. Now, I’d love to see a car company cut a deal with REDI to include one with all of their cars.