Looking for some tips on how to survive your next car trip with kids? Then look no further! I love road trips with my boys. Okay, they aren’t all usually plane sailing and we still bicker like any other family.
I have done many road trips from a road trip with a toddler in tow to a road trip with a baby. Road trips can be a great way to experience a country. I find as long as you are prepared for every eventuality then it is easy to survive a road trip with kids.
However, I still prefer driving to flying. So here are my tips for surviving a road trip with kids.
How To Survive A Road Trip With Kids
Tell The Kids About The Road Trip
If you are planning car travel with kids, then I find if you build the journey up, and tell them all about it, then they will get excited. Inform them how long the journey will be and if you plan on stopping overnight then it can help stop them constantly asking the dreaded question. However, you know your kids best and if they are the type not to take this well, then don’t tell them until the morning you are leaving.
Stock The Car On A Family Road Trip
Preparation is key when doing a family road trip. Make sure you have food at hand. Depending on the age of your children you can have the food in the back with them or you can be in charge of handing the food out. I opt for the latter as my boys would just eat everything in one go!
Zoe from Lycra Widow says a bag specifically for the car containing snacks/toys/wipes/nappies etc comes in handy
Things To Do On A Road Trip
Making sure you have plenty of things to do on a road trip will be your saviour. I find books, DVDs, tablets, audiobooks, games…the list can go on are the best road trip activities for toddlers and children alike.
Keeping them entertained in the car is key. However, it is also good at some point to not let them have anything and get them to look out the window. Playing traditional games like count the cars or play a game on who can find the first Eddie Stobart lorry can be entertaining as well.
Donna from The Sleep Theifs Mummy says It’s purgatory, but we have in-car tv’s that make it much less painful – we also ply the kids with food constantly.
Emma from Our fairytale Adventure We made sure to break the trip up, with stops every 2 – 3 hours and I put together a lot of activity packs. We bought a few zipline bags and filled them with Duplo and crafts. We also bought a few travel toys like a magnetic scribbler and a buckles toy, which were just amazing!
Jemma has some great screen free ways to keep your children entertained in the car
Make Stops On A Family Road Trip
For the best road trip with kids, I find making regular stops, especially if your journey is long is key. Toilet breaks, food breaks and just stoping for stretching your legs can really help. It means the kids can get out of the car and can run off any energy they may have.
Having a change of environment will give them other things to focus on instead of how long they have left in the car.
Lower Expectations For The Road Trip
Don’t think everything will go to plan. Sometimes it doesn’t matter how much you plan something will just happen. From being stuck in traffic to one of you getting car sick. Some things just can’t be helped.
You are in a confined space for long periods of time and your kids may bicker constantly and get on your nerves. The number one pain for me is the kids asking for a pee 5 minutes after we have left. So make sure you lower your expectations and not expect everything to go perfectly, then I find you won’t stress so much.
If you are going on a long road trip then you should make sure your car is in full working order. You don’t want to have a breakdown so make sure you have a breakdown policy for going abroad (and UK policy) in case you do. Double-check the country regulations for the countries you are visiting in case you need certain things for your car like hi-vis jackets, warning triangle etc.
And are biggest tip…have a spare back up kit in case you get stuck in traffic. After 8 hours stuck on the motorway with no food or drinks left for the kids, I was at the end of my tether. Lesson learned, and I now travel with a spare box with extra food and drinks, clothes, wipes, nappies, waterproof jackets etc. As you never know when you will need them.
And If All Else Fails…
And if all else fails then Lauretta from Home and Horizon says bribe them with sweets, money etc.
Have you done any long road trips with toddlers or older children in tow? What are your tips for surviving a road trip with your kids?
I’m linking up with #fearlessfamtrav.
First Published March 2017