Road Trip Tips

Road Trip Tips

Last year at this time, I was in the middle of blogging a series about traveling with kids. And then the world shut down and the last thing any of us were doing was traveling! I was always bummed that I wasn't able to wrap that up, but now that traveling is starting to feel comfortable again, I wanted to go back and revisit it. If you missed out on this topic the first time, you can find those posts here:

5 Tips to Prepare for the Day of Travel

Travel Tip: Pack a First Aid Bag

Leaving On a Jet Plane

The one I never got to was sharing tips for road tripping with little ones, and it seems perfectly fitting for today as many of us may be choosing to travel by car instead of plane right now. We have done a good amount of road tripping with our 4 kids, usually within (or close to) our state, but we have driven cross country before too!

I think a huge piece of the key to success for road tripping with kids in in the PREP. You kind of have to be prepared for a little bit of everything, and keep an open mind. Being able to shift course easily will keep every one sane. My husband is more in the "pedal to the metal" mindset, but I strongly believe that if you want to keep your sanity, follow your kids' lead. When they need a break, stop. Anticipate when they are going to be hungry. Stop often for stretch breaks. Yes, it may add some time to your course, but you'll all be happy in the end and that's what matters most in my opinion!

I love a good reason to prep and curate supplies just so, and road tripping is no exception. Here are my top five tips!

 #1. Snack Caddy

Feeding your kids will keep them happy, seriously! I like to keep snacks within easy reach for my crew so I'm not constantly handing them out. I keep extras in the trunk so I can replenish as needed. 


#2. Screens and Headphones

At home, we run a pretty tight ship with screen time. Road tripping is not the time for that. It's not my favorite, but I also know where we're going we will most likely have little to no screen time as we'll be busy exploring new places, so I try not to sweat it. We do not own enough devices for everyone to have their own screen, so usually the two in back and the two in front will share. These headphones are amazing, as one plugs into the device, than then another can plug right into the first set. This allows my husband and I to be able to have a conversation up front, or listen to something of our choice.

#3. Travel Potty

This has been a game changer for us. As we all know, when kids need to go, they need to go NOW. They can't always wait until the next rest stop. We keep this is our car at all times (not just for road trips!) and its great to have when in a pinch. We'll set it up on the side of the road (if privacy allows) or in the trunk. It's not glamourous, but its better than wet clothes and car seats!

#4. Car Kit
I'm a planner by nature, and I always keep a kit like this in my trunk. I switch out the contents seasonally, and it saves me a ton of time each time we venture out. I know to some extent, I am prepared for whatever comes our way. For road trips, I try to think ahead and pack things we'll likely need like a picnic blanket, paper plates, paper towels, garbage bags, hand sanitizer, bottled water, wipes, and the like.

#5. Activities
This is a no brainer and something I'm sure we all do. But for this, I like to stock up on plenty of new small toys and trinkets to keep my kids occupied. Dollar stores and dollar aisle items will be your go to for this category. Rather than filling our seat pockets full of these items at the start, I like to space them out and make them more of a surprise element. I found this idea on Pinterest and think its fantastic. Let your kids open one at various cities along your route! Bonus, if you give each child something different, they can share/rotate items for longer enjoyment!

I am always striving to make our experiences the best and most enjoyable that they can be! If you have a tried and true road trip tip, please share it!
Happy travels!
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