So, you are planning a great vacation. Your Travel Professional has made all your reservations and arrangements, given you the perfectly customized itinerary and, you are ready to go!
You’ve decided to drive to your destination and the resort address is plugged into your GPS. Congratulations! But, not so fast. If you have kids there are a few more things to consider.
While some adults have problems waiting on important dates to get here and don’t do well on long car rides, multiply that by 100 (more if the kids are younger) and you get a kid’s excitement! Doesn’t matter if you are the parent or grandparent, if you are the adult in charge you need to do some prior planning to ensure the little one’s have a fun drive! (not to mention how much better it will be for the adults!)
Number one on the list is that classic DVD player. I know a lot of parents don’t like the little ones watching hours and hours of mindless videos on a normal basis, and that countless generations have struggled through a long road trip without benefit of movies to keep them occupied – but no one can deny the peace and quiet that comes from a child watching their favorite movie on repeat, driving down the road! And, as a plus (or minus, depending on how many times you can hear “Let it Go!”) they will continue to watch the movie over and over and over!
Another classic and all-time favorite are crayons and coloring books. To update this one, I suggest changing the crayons to colored pencils. Even in winter, those nice crayons turn to a waxy mess if left in the sun! If you have younger children, those Color Wonder markers are fabulous!
Another of my favorite travel tips is if it is at all possible, travel at night. Being retired military (where your leave starts at midnight and you are not losing a single second of it) traveling at night became the only way we ever traveled! Put kids in jammies and in the car seats, then either take turns driving on one drives most of the night, and you are almost at your destination by the time they wake up!
If you are planning on fast food stops along the way, this one works great with active kiddies. Stop at a place that has a playground. Grab your food and eat while the kids are playing and burning off energy. When you are ready to leave, buckle the kids up in their safety seats, and give them their nuggets and French fries to eat. Make sure to put their drinks in a non spill cup, and you have plenty of wipes!
You probably already know to take an extra set of clothes for the kiddies, but did you think to grab extra clothes for the adults? Sometimes, when the kid has a messy accident, it is the parents who come out of it worse than the kids! More than once having a fresh set of clothes has saved the trip!
The following list is not exhaustive. It is only meant as a starting point. So, start that brain storming! Let me know of others you think of so we ca share!
The most important tip I can think of is to make sure your child safety seat is properly installed, and your child is properly in it! Maybe even have a professional inspect it before your trip! The MOST precious cargo in the car will be your children!
Most of the content is written by people at JMorris Travel. Every once in a while we will have a guest blogger, usually it is part of our 'family'.Always with a nod to Family Travel!