Road Trip Tricks
If you’re taking a road trip with children, it can quickly become overwhelming for everyone. The longer that you have to travel, the worse it can get, especially if there’s a lack of advance planning.
To avoid serious issues, consider utilizing these tips for traveling with kids:
Avoid Rush Hour Traffic
When traveling by car with your children, it’s especially important to avoid sitting in rush hour traffic. This means that it makes good sense to carefully map out your trip so that you avoid metro destinations during times of day that will be especially busy. There’s not a lot that’s worse than sitting in rush hour traffic, except sitting in that same traffic while listening to unhappy children who need to use the bathroom or are hungry. It’s far better for everyone on the trip if you plan in advance so that you’re far away from these types of situations.
Pack Plenty of Snacks
Packing snacks will also help keep your children happy and entertained. Whether you opt for mostly healthy snacks with the occasional treat, or use road trips as a time to binge on junk food, the kids are sure to enjoy the diversions that regular snack breaks allow. If you allow them to eat in the vehicle, be sure to pack paper towels for spills, small trash bags for wrappers, and select snacks that are not especially messy. Pretzels or applesauce pouches are a good option, for example, while cheese curls may create more of a mess on the vehicle’s upholstery.
Plan Appropriate Entertainment
Long car trips can be boring for everyone, but especially for children, who may not be all that talented when it comes to entertaining themselves. If the car trip will be a long one, it may make sense to pack travel games for them to play, audiobooks, or toys that can be used in the vehicle. If they have cell phones or tablets, it may also be possible to set them up with games or apps that teach them about the areas that you’ll be exploring. Alternatively, you can purchase a children’s atlas for this purpose.
Take Periodic Breaks
When traveling by car with children, it makes sense to plan stops every few hours so that they can get out and stretch their legs. This really helps to cut down on negative behavior in the car and allows them a chance to burn off the extra energy that builds up while being stuck in such a small area for a long period of time. If possible, choose rest stops that have playgrounds, restaurants with play areas, or national parks with hiking paths where the children can wander about and get some exercise. This lets them have a chance to work off some energy while you all take a much needed break.
If you need to travel with your kids for long distances by car, it’s important to plan carefully. This will allow everyone to enjoy the trip more, as they will be more likely to be comfortable.