Summer vacations, long weekends, and holidays call for family road trips. Family road trips are a great way to bond as a family. However, a relaxing road trip can turn chaotic and cranky if everyone isn’t comfortable and entertained. Make the next family road trip a success and avoid repeated “are we there yet?” questions with these tips.
Plan for Stops
Don’t ever assume kids (or adults) can drive straight through without a break. Plan regular stops every one to two hours, if possible. Make holidays fun by getting out and exercising as a family, visiting a quick tourist stop, or trying new local food. Encourage everyone to use the restroom and warn them about how long it is until the next stop.
Make a Seating Schedule
Stop kids from fighting over coveted window seats by making a seating schedule ahead of time. Arrange a schedule that aligns with the planned stops for regular switches. Knowing that they only have to sit by a particular sibling or in an unwanted seat for a specific time can make trips more bearable for everyone.
Stock Up on Healthy Snacks
Don’t be tempted to grab junk food for your trip. The high salt and sugar levels in junk food and fast food will cause extra swelling, blood sugar crashes, and increased hunger. Overall, it will likely leave everyone feeling less than their best. Some healthy on-the-go snacks include:
- Dried fruit and nuts
- Easy-to-peel oranges
- String cheese
- Yogurt tubes
- Boiled eggs
- Beef or turkey jerky
- Hard-boiled eggs
It is also a good idea to bring a small cooler filled with water bottles to keep everyone hydrated. Encourage everyone to sip, rather than guzzle, to prevent frequent restroom stops.
Tune Up the Car Stereo
Long car trips are the perfect time to listen and sing along to good music, books, and podcasts as a family. Tune up or replace the car stereo and ensure it is in good working order before traveling. You may want to consider purchasing a new stereo if yours is older. More recent models include touch-screen navigation features, Apple CarPlay, and built-in Bluetooth to make it easy to listen to favorites. To ensure that you tune up your car stereo properly, you should pay close attention to your subwoofers, especially in a smaller car. For instance, it might be the case that you need to invest in some new subwoofers, and therefore reading this review of the best shallow mount subwoofer could help you to find the perfect new sound system for your vehicle. You can compare different brands and models to choose a product that matches your needs.
Download Family-Friendly Content Ahead of Time
Don’t count on having internet access during your entire trip. Make a playlist as a family, include everyone’s favorite songs, and download it to your phone. Audiobooks, podcasts, and shows can also be downloaded ahead of schedule to cut down on loading and lag times.
Keep Kids and Cargo Separate
Squished kids are not happy kids. Keep cargo separate from the kids’ space, and give them plenty of room to move and stretch while traveling. Keep the load tucked under the seats, in the back of the vehicle, or strapped securely on top of the car to keep everyone safe and comfortable.
You don’t need to dread spending hours in the car as a family during the next road trip. Be prepared ahead of time and plan on enjoying some quality time together as a family while traveling.