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Football season is finally here. Every Sunday for the foreseeable future, everyone is busy from morning until Sunday Night Football has ended. Many people love to attend their local games and show up really early. You need a pickup truck if you’re one of those people who likes to hang out in the parking lot and grill, party, and play backyard games until the action starts. Tailgating is a fundamental part of the game, but you’ll need to be prepared with all the best available features. Here are the five best truck features you need for tailgating football games.

1. Remote/automatic open/close tailgate

A dark color 2022 full-size pickup truck Toyota Tundra parked in front of some buildings.
2022 Toyota Tundra | Getty Images

Fortunately, the first feature is one of the most valuable for any truck owner. Additionally, it’s available with nearly any pickup truck on the market. A remote and automatic open/close tailgate does exactly what it sounds like. Owners can open or close the tailgate of their truck with the push of a button either on the pickup itself or on the key fob. In addition, the tailgate uses its own locking mechanism, so your belongings will be safe inside. Of course, this is important for anyone tailgating a football game to completely control their vehicle, even when they’ve stepped away from it.

2. Truck bed household outlets

A 2022 Ford Maverick owner inflates a floatation device using a truck-bed outlet, essential for tailgating.
2022 Ford Maverick truck bed outlets | Ford

Another critical feature for tailgating is outlets in the bed of your truck. Some trucks come with one or two outlets, but some have many more. You’ll probably want a few when attending a long tailgating party. Plugging in electronics is essential, whether for music, an electric grill, or even just charging phones. Moreover, those who don’t have tickets to the game might want to use a portable device to watch it from the comfort of your pickup’s cargo bed. Of course, a phone, tablet, or laptop dying in the fourth quarter would be a crime.

3. A multi-function tailgate

A 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 MuiltiPro tailgate is perfect for football games.
2022 GMC Sierra 1500 MultiPro tailgate | GMC

One essential thing trucks can do now is turn their tailgate into many other things. Instead of just a door holding cargo in the truck bed, it’s now a multi-functional piece of equipment. A step, desk, bed extender, and more are available with many automaker’s pickups. According to Car and Driver, the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 has the best example of them all. The MultiPro tailgate comes with every Sierra 1500 SLT, AT4, and Denali trim level. While other brands offer some of the same features with their tailgate, only GMC covers them.

4. Plenty of storage space

A 2022 Honda Ridgeline under bed storage container. Perfect for a tailgate party before a football game.
2022 Honda Ridgeline under-bed storage | Honda

When we say a truck needs plenty of storage for tailgating, we’re not talking about buying a long bed. Some pickups offer cargo containers inside the truck bed. Whether it’s hidden on the side like in a Ram 1500 or underneath, like in the Honda Ridgeline. Moreover, we think the Ridgeline’s under-bed storage container is perfect for tailgating a football game. It’s a large container beneath the bed with a drain plug. In short, it’s the ideal spot to load with ice and beverages, quickly drained at the end of the day.

5. A truck bed audio system

Self-explanatory, every football game tailgater needs audio behind the vehicle. Listening through the interior speakers can be difficult. Everyone nearby will want clear audio, whether it’s music or the game. Some trucks, like the GMC Sierra and Honda Ridgeline, offer built-in truck-bed audio systems. Even more impressive are features like that with the Ridgeline, which allows owners to turn off the truck completely to save gas and battery power but still listen through the speakers. As a result, owners don’t need to waste extra money on external speakers just for the tailgate party.

Best pickup truck features for tailgating football games

In conclusion, football games are sometimes an all-day event. If you’re someone who attends a game from morning until night via the back of a pickup truck, you’ll need the best features available. Automatic open/close, household outlets in the bed, a multi-function tailgate, plenty of storage, and a truck-bed audio system are essentials for football season. Don’t go into every NFL Sunday unprepared; get these features and be the perfect tailgate host everyone remembers.


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