Road trips can be a great way to travel with family. It gives you a chance to see more of your home country and to make the journey a part of your holiday. It’s a way to have fun, and bond with your partner or friends away from the distractions of everyday life. Plus, for those of us that enjoy a long drive, it’s relaxing and peaceful especially when the scenery is pretty. But, once you’ve got kids, it isn’t as simple as just throwing everything in the car and driving.
Instead, if you take a little time to prepare for your family road trip, and you’ll have fun and reduce the stress that comes with traveling with children. And, most importantly, avoid the chimes of “are we nearly there yet” echoing from the back seat(s).
Prepare Your Car
The last thing that you want on your road trip is to break down in the middle of nowhere with tired, hot and bored children. It is important to make sure your vehicle is travel ready long before you set off. We timed a car purchase with a trip a while back. When looking we searched outside of London and found a better deal than if we had bought from a dealer or private seller in London. We used a company like Reed Autos and made a great saving by doing this (approx £2000). Not everyone is going to buy a car for a road trip of course. You can take your car to Halfords for bulb/fuse changes or, your local garage to get more serious repairs made before you travel.
It is important to perform basic car safety checks, like testing tyre air pressure, checking fluid levels and lights. I would suggest you consider a full service if it’s been a while since the last one.
Involve the Kids
Be sure to explain that you are going on a long trip and that you can stop whenever they need to. Give children the opportunity to choose what toys they’d like to take with them for the car journey. Also make sure the children dress themselves in loose, comfortable clothes as it will make the journey more comfortable.
Games to Fill the Time
There are numerous games you can play to help pass the time. Younger children might be happy to play eye spy or to see how many red cars they can count. Children have short attention spans as many parents will be aware. Ipads are a life saver. Whatever age your child(ren) an ipad is guaranteed to keep them all entertained. Make sure you download age appropriate games before you travel and have your ipad(s) fully charged. Older children might also enjoy making an Instagram story of your journey or taking fun snaps of things on the road.
What to Pack
It’s best to be organised with your packing rather than leave it to the last minute. I start packing well in advance and have separate bags for snacks and drinks. If you will be reaching your destination late then don’t forget the blankets to help keep the kiddies snug and warm. Don’t forget to make sure there is plenty of water and snacks for all.
It helps to make sure that spare clothes, baby wipes, tablets, headphones, chargers and battery packs are easy to reach. You might also want to pack PJs and toothbrushes at the top of your bag so that you can find them easily when you arrive and are too tired to unpack.
Plan Your Route
Photo Credit: Pixabay
Sat navs can be fantastic for long road trips. Many cars come with them inbuilt although I do tend to have our Tom Tom at hand just in case. For more out of the way places then an old fashioned map may come in handy. Make sure you have an idea of where you are headed and take rest stops if needed.
Most importantly, have fun!!!
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