Published Date: 11/07/19
Road trips are great for creating memories and introducing your little one to the world. However, road tripping with kids presents unique challenges that you need to prepare for before you leave. With a little advance prep, your trip can be a smooth one.
Keep Them Entertained
It's true that your child is probably going to ask for an estimated time of arrival about every four minutes. To keep the questioning and boredom at bay, find ways to keep your little one entertained in the car. Kids can be a little distracting and loud when they're in the backseat for a long period of time, so a good way to keep them entertained and quiet is with a gaming device or portable DVD player. Even if you're not crazy about the idea of screen time, it can be an absolute life-saver in the car. Make a playlist with your child's favorite songs for the car ride, and be prepared to play car games if that helps keep them distracted.
Know Where the Rest Stops Are
Check your route before leaving so you will know where the rest stops are located. If you see an area that looks pretty bare when it comes to places to stop, make sure you take your kids to the restroom and let them run out of energy before you have to drive through an area where it won't be possible. Plan stops for food, restroom breaks and just to stretch if everyone is getting too cranky in the car. Though you may want to make the trip in the least amount of time possible, it's a good idea to plan in enough stops for all of you to have some breaks.
Focus on the Positive
When trapped in a car with a young child, it's easy to point out the behavior you don't like. Try as much as possible to focus on the positive. Remember that however long the ride feels for you, it likely feels ten times longer for your child. Point out when you are proud of the way your child is handling the ride, and offer empathy and understanding when they express frustration. This will keep everyone feeling like they are on the same team. Your children may also want to repeat the good behavior that earned them praise.
You don't have to put off road trips until your children are older. Prepare before you leave and explore the world with your little ones in tow. This will help your road trip with your little ones to be much safer and more positive of an experience.