Keeping your kids happy on a car journey will keep you happy. Many parents have been driven crazy by impatient kids eager for the toilet or simply eager to get to their destination. From alleviating boredom to preventing accidents, here are just some of the ways you can survive your next road trip with the kids.
Make regular stops
You should aim to stop every two hours. Not only does this give everyone a chance to use the toilet and potentially grab some food, it also helps to give kids a change of environment that can help to fight boredom. You could even plan your stop before you set off – there may be sights along the way worth visiting.
Be careful with snacks
It’s worth bringing some food and drinks for the journey, however you should be wary of letting your kids have too much sugar – it could make them hyperactive, which is not what you want on a car journey. You may also want to control how much they’re drinking so that you don’t have to keep stopping for toilet breaks.
Take a tablet
A tablet is the ultimate distraction toy for kids. You may be able to find games online such as bike games or download a movie for them to watch en route. You could even download an audiobook for them to listen to. Make sure that if you’ve got multiple kids they all share the tablet – you may be able to download multi-player games or come up with a sharing system.
Make it a learning process
Car journeys can be a chance to learn new things about geography, road awareness, nature and history. Give your kids a roadmap so that they can try and work out whereabouts you are from road signs. You can also provide knowledge of places along the way.
Play car journey games as a family
There are many car journey games that you can play en route as a family. This could help to keep kids occupied whilst providing family bonding time. Think beyond I-spy – kids can easily get bored of this game. One game could be the number plate game in which you have to try and collect as many number plates as you can from each state by spotting vehicles. You can also do this with car manufacturers. There are also games like 21 questions in which everyone has only 21 guesses to work out what someone is thinking of, to which they can only reply yes or no. There’s also the tunnel game in which everyone has to try and hold their breath when going under a tunnel (well, maybe not the driver!).
Bring a blanket
With any luck, your kids may decide to take a nap during the journey. Bringing a blanket could help them to get comfortable and prevent you having to deal with overtired kids. You can also buy travel pillows for kids.
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