Road trips are the norm with my family. We do at least one epic one every year and smaller ones through the year as well. A few years ago, I compiled a list of my favorite tips for traveling. I was reading it over and thought I need to update that because my kids are bigger now and not into the same things as when they were little. Honestly I miss having the kids be younger but at the same time, we have a way different type of fun. We use to have long talks about Power Rangers but now we talk current events and sometimes have a history lesson.
We usually pass through a Little Rock and Hope which is full of history. We make pit stops along the Mississippi and see how vast the land of Lincoln is because it feels like it never ends!
Here are some of favorite tips for traveling (updated):
1. Have a dedicated box of entertainment like crayons, makers and things to color. My kids LOVE all that kind of stuff. This still holds true for my younger kid because he will spend hours drawing his wonderful pictures!
2. Have each kid have their own car bag/backpack. These are things they want to come with and give comfort. My kids are both so different. My daughter packs it to the brim while my son just takes the basics like his favorite stuffed animals and a few books.
3. Phones gave now replaced the tablets and DVD players. Make sure you have chargers and access to them. We have unlimited data so they can play games, watch tv shows etc. it’s a life saver on car rides.
4. Snacks, lots of snacks. I hate stopping and buying snacks at the gas station because every time is like 10 bucks for nothing. So we went to the dollar store and for 20 bucks got twenty different kinds of snacks. Everyone was happy to have their favs right there in a bag. My kids loved it and we will always be doing this but sunflower seeds are off the list now forever- need I say more.
5. Hard surfaces for kids. I have gotten all sorts of ones for the kids like the trays, and binders but the best yet was the $1 cookie sheet from the dollar store. It has so many uses like drawing space, lego building (yes my son for hours and hours on our trip built legos) and it is magnetic so that works as well. Best idea yet for that.
6.Charging station and enough cables for phones, tablets and computers. I created a cute pouch to store my stuff in for easy access so when a cable is needed, it was there. I also made sure to get stuff back. So far we are only missing a set of headphones (of course mine that I borrowed to someone). I will find them I am sure at some point unless they fell out somewhere which has happened.
7.Patience and lots of it. Things happen that are out of your control. You may turn the wrong way (I tend to do that more than I like to admit). I got turned around one time that costs us like thirty minutes. I was in tears but everyone else was laughing on our adventure. So just relax and enjoy the ride.
8.Have comfy clothes to wear. Leggings and yoga pants are a must. Nothing with buttons or zippers because they can jab plus it is so much faster to go potty. Also wear layers because outside might be hot but with the air con, we get cold. I wear a sweater most of the time.
9.Have pillows and blankets because without a doubt you will doze off at some point (just not while driving). I also include in my stash a eye mask to help it get dark. I also like the neck roll as well for trips. It actually gets fought over when I am not using it.
10. Have fun with the trip. The drive can be ling and boring so find ways to change it up. Sometimes we have long family talks about the weirdest things while on our trips and other times we go for hours not talking at all.
It was interesting to go through the list this year as we ready for our cross country trek. It gets easier every year but that’s because we know what to expect. We usually stop at the same places because we know what to expect. We have our favorites and we have ones that are super memorable like the woman’s bathroom that had two toilets facing each other (no stales at all) and my daughter and I laugh still about it.
Thanks for stopping by!