Here are a few simple ways to keep kids entertained on a road trip:
The family road trip can be one of the most remarkable and rewarding experiences a family can have together. However, when traveling with children, things can be very stressful. However, with some careful planning and consideration, you can reduce the stress a road trip can cause. By following these simple ways to keep kids entertained on a road trip, you can make the most of your family vacation and road trip.
Take plenty of rest stops, regardless of if you plan on doing any resting at all. This gives your children time to run around, burn off excess energy, use the restroom, get snacks and drinks, and explore where they are going. It can also help reduce carsickness, should your children be susceptible to it.
Prepare to have changes in your plans. This is something most parents excel at, as children can change the course of an entire day in one fell swoop. As a result, you should always have a backup plan, in case you wind up going somewhere else, needing a distracting moment away from a cancelled part of the trip, etc.
Keep your kids full, to minimize carsickness. Use snacks to do this, and stop for full meals when applicable. Make the snacks healthy, like vegetables, pieces of fruit, nuts, trail mix, or pretzels. Too many sugary snacks with not enough substantial food can make children feel ill, and make them hyperactive.
Travel in stages, if you are going very far for multiple days. Driving for two days consecutively can be stressful, and a poor experience for both you and your children. Stop for a day in between days of driving and take in local sights, visit a park, zoo, or amusement park. This can be a great way to relieve the exhaustion of driving, and keep your children tired and relaxed on the rest of the drive.
Travel at the right time of day for your children. Some parents find that driving through the night and arriving at the destination by morning can be beneficial, as it allows the children to sleep in the car on the way there. Other families prefer that everyone is well-rested before embarking in the morning.
Upon arriving at the destination, see what local experiences interest your children. By driving through a city on your way to your lodging, point out possible places of interest, and see if your children are interested in going to any of them.
Play travel games to keep your children interested and alert. This can also keep them from getting bored and irritable. Printing out road trip bingo charts, playing the license plate game, and variations of the alphabet game can be great ways to occupy your children’s minds. Or consider bringing along a few LEGO pieces to keep them entertained building things in the back seat.
Make stops at parks along the way. This will give both you and your children time to stretch your legs and relax, particularly if you or your adult companion experience road rage while driving, which can stress children out.
Try to bring movies on portable devices, if you can. Traveling as a family in a road trip vacation can be a great way to bond with your children. By planning ahead and taking into consideration a child’s need for instant gratification, you can have a great experience.