“Are we there yet?” “Mom, he just pulled my hair!” “Honey, you don’t have to drive so slow” … From my kids crying and yelling the back seat to my husband being a driver from the passenger seat, road trips without a plan can certainly drive you up the wall. I mean sure, traveling on a road trip is supposed to be about the experience you get from seeing new sights with the ones you love, but after about an hour or two, the fun and excitement dissipates. The scenery becomes nothing more than trees and the open road; the kids become bored, and the frustration kicks in.
Therefore, if you want to keep your sanity during your next family road trip, I’d highly recommend trying some of these tips listed below:
1. Tablets/Mobile Devices for Kids
No, you don’t want your child getting too much screen time, but when you’re all crammed in the car with a few hours of highway between you and your destination, having these types of devices is ideal to keep the peace. Some tablets are designed exclusively for kids. They are packed with educational games and fun, interactive stories for your children to be entertained with. Having at least one (or two if you have more than one child as this can also cause an argument) on hand is an easy way to keep them calm. Make sure that the devices are fully charged and that there are plenty of choices for your kids to choose from when it comes to games and books.
2. Mobile Devices/Tablets for Adults
Sometimes even mom and dad need a little entertainment while sitting in the passenger seat. Mobile devices and tablets can also come in handy for this occasion. There are plenty of streaming services that cost under ten dollars that can be downloaded onto your mobile device. You can watch movies, catch up on the news, or even watch your favorite television shows as you enjoy the ride. While a few sappy movies might entertain mom, dad might not be so interested. Ladies, if you want to keep your husband’s attention off your driving abilities, you might consider investing in a sports streaming service that can be viewed from the mobile device.
For instance, NFL Sunday Ticket Max is a service offered by Direct TV that allows you to watch the latest games and sports news from any internet capable device. Direct-ticket.net has more information on these types of services.
3. Dry Erase Boards
Another great way to keep the kids calm in the back of the car is to invest in dry erase boards and markers. These are inexpensive and allow time to draw and color whatever the children like over and over again. You can even give the kids ideas along the way. For instance, they could draw you a picture of what they’re most excited about seeing once you arrive at your destination. Dry erase boards can also be used to play games like tic tac toe.
4. Road Games/Songs
If you want to go the old school route than playing road games and singing songs is another way that you can keep the family entertained while on the road. For example, I’ll pick a car color, and we’ll see who can find the most cars that color. Or playing eye spy is another great way to get the kids looking at their surroundings. You can also sing songs together and just hone in on the entire experience of being on the road together.
I wish I could say that your road trip will be smooth sailing from here, but of course, life doesn’t always happen that way. At least these few suggestions can help you in keeping the kids (and your spouse) occupied while you travel down the road to your destination. Other suggestions would be to have plenty of snacks, and take a few breaks so that everyone can stretch their legs and use the restroom. Other than that, enjoy yourselves and have fun to spend time with the ones you love the most.