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Road Trip Tips: 6 Ways To Keep Your Kids Happy While You Drive

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Road Trip Tips: 6 Ways To Keep Your Kids Happy While You DrivePlanning a family getaway is never an easy feat. So, you want to have a fun-filled break with the people you love the most? Well, don’t we all? Still, if you want to pull it off without having to deal with too many temper tantrums along the way, you really need a plan.  Check out our road trip tips below!

Taking a road trip can honestly be a fantastic idea but when you have kids, you need to prepare for the journey. There’s just no point whatsoever in setting off before you are truly ready. Here’s a secret: Kids get bored easily. If they don’t have anything to do while you drive, they will start moaning and being a pain. Here’s how you can keep them happy while you tackle the open road.

Invest in a (long) audiobook. The first thing you need to do is find a way to entertain your little ones. If you have particularly young children, it’s worth investing in an audiobook that will grasp their attention. Choose something that you won’t mind listening to along the way as well. If they have a favorite author, grab a book they haven’t read or heard before. Failing that, go for a classic tale that they will love. With any luck, they’ll be so very engrossed by the story, they won’t have time to complain.

Related: Road Trip Safety Tips – Stay Awake, Be Prepared and Travel Savvy




Reward your kids along the way. Most children respond well to positive reinforcement. What that means is that you need to make sure that you reward your kids when they do well. Before you set off, be sure to let your kids know how and when you will reward them. For example, you could tell them that if they’re good (and quiet) for the first two hours, you will stop off for pancakes. Trust me, having this reward to dangle in front of them when you need to will be a massive help.

Make plenty of pit stops! Let’s not beat around the bush here. Kids can’t cope all that well with ultra long journeys. They have a much shorter attention span than we do, which means that they get tired of the same old thing super fast. You need to plan ahead and make sure that you have a whole load of pit stops along the way. Stopping off at service stations means that your kids will get a chance to stretch their legs and use the bathroom.

Play some car games together. When I was a kid, my family and I would always play games together when we were in the car. From ‘I spy’ to little word-based riddles, we never spent a single second of the journey feeling bored! That’s why I think it’s honestly very important that you do this with your children. Check out some car games online before you hit the road. Trust me, you will thank me later for this one.

Related: Save Money on Gas – 6 Ways to Budget Fuel for Your Road Trip

Fuel up on… snacks. This little tip is as much for you as your kids. Children get very cranky when they’re hungry. The last thing you need is your children moaning that they need food when you’re stuck in a line of traffic. It would be an utter nightmare! Instead, you should take a bag of snacks along with you. Include things with loads of energy (like chocolate bars) and healthy snacks (like fruit). That way, your kids will always have full tummies and happy faces!

Pack a few games and toys. Finally, this is perhaps the most important tip of them all. Of course, you don’t want to take all your kids’ toys along with you, but you ought to take a few choice ones. Grab toys that they can use in the back of the car, such as handheld consoles or even coloring books, and stick them in a bag. When your kids say that they are bored, simply give them a toy and watch them play away. Genius.

If you follow these tips, you should have a really greta journey. Remember, heading out on a road trip with your loved ones is a great way to spend a vacation so make sure you enjoy every second of it! After all, you really deserve some quality time with the people closest to you.

Are you heading out on a road trip this summer?  Do you have any tips to keeping the kids occupied and happy?  Let us know!

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14 Comments

  1. Stacie in Atlanta says

    My biggest tip is one that some parents frown upon – electronics. I know some think it defeats the purpose of a road trip, but when my kids are getting ready to play the car version of Fight Club, I bust out the tablets. Problem solved.

  2. Colleen Lanin says

    I always make sure we have plenty of snacks. A full kid is a kid less likely to be a little demon. LOL

  3. Jen Rattie says

    Our schedules are too crazy for a road trip this year. =( We do love our trips, though. I find that they go the most smoothly when there are TONS of snacks and lots of electronics on hand. My kids are older.

  4. Pam says

    Snacks are so important on road trips. My family can get unbelievably hangry on trips.

  5. Liz Mays says

    We definitely need to have snacks that keep up our energy. I wouldn’t mind picking out a few audiobooks to listen to next time!

  6. Brianne says

    These are excellent tips! We take tons of road trips in the summer time!

  7. Jennifer says

    These are some great tips! Kids definitely need to have entertainment and snacks.

  8. Rosey says

    I am def. going to invest in an audio book next time. I do love me a good road trip!

  9. Kristi says

    Thankfully our kids have always traveled well… well as long as we have enough books with us. That means a stop at the library or thrift store before hitting the road.

  10. My Teen Guide says

    I agree with all the tips here, especially the pit stops. When we do road trips, we do that often. To use the restrooms, to stress, or grab a hot meal. Most of all, it gives us a chance to stretch and walk around. We don’t want to reach our destination with a square butt. Haha.

  11. Amanda Love says

    Games and toys are very important when you’re out on a road trip! I think these are lovely suggestions.

  12. Carol Cassara says

    Pit stops are a must if you want your kids to not be grumpy and moody all the time. Entertainment is also really important.

  13. Shannon Gurnee says

    Road trips can be a lot of fun, but also stressful if you aren’t prepared. I think that taking breaks and having snacks are super important!

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