Family vacations are a great way to spend time with the people you love while getting away from the daily grind. Maybe you’re going somewhere far, like to Disneyland or the beach, and it would make sense to fly.
But why not add an extra experience to the mix by driving? It’s time to load up the car and hit the pavement for a family road trip! They can be fun, but also frustrating, and if you’re preparing for one there are certain tips you should know about to make the drive as enjoyable as possible.
Bring the Right Wheels
Before you leave, you’ll want to decide on a vehicle to take. Preferably, something large with plenty of space, such as a van or SUV. If you plan to spend hours upon hours on the open road, you don’t want to feel cramped with your knees and elbows smacking into everything.
Make sure the vehicle you take is also something reliable that has little chance of breaking down. Yes, your 67’ Mustang would look cool, but unless you know a classic car mechanic and want to be squished the entire time, you might want to go with your second option.
Prepare To Make Stops
You might be the kind of person that thinks ahead and schedules out your trip in advance down to the time of arrival, but if you’re traveling with kids, you’re going to need to allow some time for pit stops. You can ask them ten times if they have to use the bathroom before you leave, but you can almost guarantee that you’ll be pulling off to the nearest gas station more than once.
True, these stops are necessary regardless of any age, as you’ll need to get gas and use the restroom yourself, but children have a habit of needing above the average amount. You may need to pull over if they begin to get carsick as well. Save yourself the headache and expect that this will happen, it’s just part of the process.
“Are we there yet?” Unless you want to listen to this for the duration of the trip, it’s advised that you bring something to keep your kids entertained. This can be a handheld gaming system, a book, a tablet, whatever!
Just be sure that your offspring have some way of keeping themselves busy. You could also play a game as a family, like twenty questions or other driving games–just don’t fall into the “eye spy” trap and get caught staring at something green and something blue for hours.
Know Your Route
The last thing you want on your road trip is to get lost. Prevent the need to stop and ask for directions or take unwanted detours by mapping out your route before you hit the road. Utilize google maps if you need to, as it makes driving in unknown territory much easier, or use your vehicle’s built-in navigation system. Pull up an old-school map if that’s what it takes! Just make sure you know where you’re going.
By following these tips, you can rest easy in knowing that you did your best to ensure your family road trip goes as smoothly as possible. Remember, this is intended to be fun! Once you reach your destination it will all be worth it, but that doesn’t mean the ride there can’t be an adventure too.