We all love to take those family vacations and spend quality time with our
family. The biggest hurdle, as I am sure you are all aware of, is getting to and
from your destination with your children. Kids don’t like long car rides and can’t
sit still for very long. Their concept of time is nonexistent and the consistent “Are
we there yet?” questioning can drive you crazy! Here are some tips that we have
found work great for traveling with our sons.
Prepare them for the trip
You want them to know where you are going, how
long it will take to get there, how long you will be there, and how you are getting
there. We take trips every summer that we are in the car for 4 hours. So we
compare most trips to that. He knows that “the brown house” is a long drive and
we stop halfway to eat and stretch. When we go other places we compare the
ride to that.
Bring Entertainment for the ride
We got a portable DVD player and an ipad
to occupy him in the car. He watches shows and can time the long ride by those
shows or movies. He knows “the brown house” is a 2-3 movie ride ha ha so
when we go camping which is only 2 hours away, it’s a 1 movie ride! He picks
out the movies he wants to bring to watch. When he was younger we had to
change the movies in the player but now he does it all by himself. Also, make
sure you pack headphones so that you don’t have to actually listen to whatever
your kids want to watch! Sometimes, if they are all watching on the same
player, this isn’t an option but if they each have a device or you are traveling with just one child, definitely a good investment!
Pillow and Blanket
Bring these to keep those kiddos tucked in tight! Long
rides can be uncomfortable so why not bring stuff to keep them from being too
uncomfortable during that long ride?
If you can afford to, travel either early morning or late into the evening. This
way, your children may actually fall asleep during the ride! We like to take the
long car rides at night so that Tyler falls asleep. We took him on a plane for the
first time this year and flew late afternoon on the way there (he slept for half of it)
and overnight on the way home (he slept the whole time) which was perfect! I
mean, after an overnight flight we all slept the next day for a bit, but Tyler wasn’t
forced to sit still and he wasn’t crazy on the plane because he was sleeping!
Definitely worth it to travel when you know your child will sleep for a bit!
If your kids are anything like mine, they are ALWAYS hungry! So we
pack snacks for the ride. Granola bars, fruit snacks, chips, juice boxes, all easy
things that he can have in the car that doesn’t make too much of a mess. We try
to pack a small cooler so that we can keep the waters and juice boxes cold.
Since we also travel with our dog, we keep the snacks in a bag zipped up tight! We also have a travel dish for the dogs water and some treats when she behaves in the car.
We let him pack up a bag with his toys for the ride and for use during
vacation. We have him pick out, within reason, the toys he would like to bring
wherever we are going. He picks out his action figures, wrestlers, cars, and
whatever else and we let him keep the bag with him so that he can get at his stuff
when he wants to. This has been a big lifesaver when stuck in traffic or at the
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I hope that these little tid bits are helpful to you. They seem simple enough
but if you forget any of them that long ride could be miserable! We take trips all
the time so we have learned what we need and what we don’t to keep everyone
happy during transportation. Good luck and safe travels!!