5 tips for a pleasant road trip with kids

on 08/10/2020

Travelling by car with kids can easily turn into a nightmare if things get out of hand. However, if you leave well prepared, it can really be a fun experience. Since your children are tied to their seats with nowhere else to go and nothing else to do, it’s the perfect occasion to plan some quality time as a family !

Tip 1 : Time is of the essence

Depending on the duration of the drive, the time at which you leave is important. For example, if you plan a very long trip, leaving in the middle of the night or very early in the morning can be a good idea. The first reason why is that you will beat traffic, especially if it’s during a school break or you live in a big city. The second reason is that the kids will start the trip sleeping and it won’t seem so long to them. Plan a breakfast stop when they wake up so they can stretch their legs and you too !

Tip 2 : Rest before you drive

This may sound like a basic road safety tip and it is. But in this case, it’s even more important, because if you’re well rested, you’ll be in a better mood to withstand the numerous “are we there yet ?”, the occasional fight, fit or delay. 

Travelling with kids is always full of unexpected events and trips always take much longer than you planned. So don’t rush, make the required rest stops every two hours, it’s important for your safety and that’s the maximum amount of time small children can stay seated without moving. Allow for at least 15 minutes so your kids can jump around and you can relax.

Tip 3 : Plan ahead

The fact that the trip is going to take longer than you planned doesn’t mean that it’s useless to plan it. Rather, it’s quite important. Check your itinerary beforehand and plan the stops. You can even plan fun stops with an activity, something to see or a nice place to picnic. Make the journey the beginning of the vacation !

Tip 4 : Organize your car

When traveling with children, especially young children, you need to take a lot of things with you. Chances are it’s going to be packed to the last available centimeter, so you better make sure that what you will need during the trip is handy.

Here is a quick checklist with the basics :

  • Change of clothes and nappies
  • Food and drink
  • Games and activities
  • Tablets, chargers and pocket wifi
  • Plastic bags and wipes if anyone gets sick

You also might want to take pillows and blankets to make the naps as comfortable as possible.

Tip 5 : Keep your kids busy

If your children are busy, they won’t notice the time passing. Your day can be planned the same way you would do it at home : meals, naps, games, creative activities, tv and even homework !

If they are old enough, share the schedule with them. If they know what comes next, it makes the wait more acceptable and the trip more enjoyable for them and for you.

Marine Nicolas5 tips for a pleasant road trip with kids