How to Keep Sane On Long Drives With the Kids

road trip tips for the family

If you’ve ever seen the Robin Williams film, RV you’ll know it encapsulates the sense of family adventure and magical moments to be had in a family road trip – this can be an attractive option for families wanting to explore nearby countries, yet road trips are often punctuated with a little chaos and family arguments, which is why we came up with ways to keep your sanity on a family road trip.

While flying to a destination can be much more convenient and sometimes cheaper too,  flying as a family can be hassle, and there’s a certain independence that comes with taking a road trip to your destination.  

That being said, there’s a huge difference between taking a road trip in a fancy convertible, or on a motorbike, where you can feel the wind in your hair and a connection to the road – a family road trip, to many is a much more tedious experience.

Just like how you might visit Solo Moto to get parts in order to properly maintain your motorbike, you need to ensure your family car is maintained to a high standard too, as when travelling with your family safety is of paramount importance, and one of the most testing situations you can have on a long trip with the kids is to break down at the side of the road and have to wait for a recover vehicle.

With regard to the journey itself, a long journey can be tiring enough for adults, but when you are having to be responsible for the constant entertainment of children in a confined space with very little to do; long family journey’s can be fraught with frustration.

Here’s a few tips on how to keep your sanity…

STOP OFF ALONG THE WAY

The days of arguing over a huge map and getting are mostly over – as now, at least, there tend to be a common enemy the whole family can get mad at; as the SatNav does often take us on weird and wonderful protracted routes.  

That said, we can sometimes be over-reliant on SatNav as a way to get us to our final destination, yet as with life, a good trip is about the journey, and therefore it’s good to plan a route that allows for some interesting stop-offs along the way.  

It’s understood that sometimes you just want to get to where you’re going, but when you’re driving with kids, driving straight for five hours might be the most fuel and time efficient way to travel but it’s going to be fraught with frustration, unless they happen to sleep… but think of all the things you are missing out on along the journey.

KEEP YOUR CHILDREN ENTERTAINED

The trick here is to ensure your kids have plenty of engaging activities that don’t require too much in the way of adult participation – whether that’s watching a film on a mobile device or the back of your seat, something more ‘old school’ like a colouring book and some crayons, or wearing them out to the point that when they get in the car they simply drift off to sleep and relax throughout the whole journey.

KEEP THE ADULTS ENTERTAINED TOO

It’s equally important for the adults to have something to keep them entertained too; the good news is that often this can be as simple as a great soundtrack, a good book, or a deep conversation.  Indeed, a deep conversation (presuming it’s not about anything too intense) is particularly effective at keeping the driver engaged and awake on a long drive, but again, it’s probably best to keep these talks to ‘low level’ stuff that is child friendly.

EAT OFTEN

When dealing with travel sickness there are plenty of pharmaceutical remedies that can help travellers with motion sickness but one of the best tips is to eat little and often throughout the journey with an adequate supply of fresh air.  This way, you’re not putting unnecessary medicine in your body, and aren’t spending extra money. That said, presuming you’re not the driver, a lot of travel sickness medication makes people drowsy which might not be the worst thing, should it be a particularly long drive.

HAVE A GREAT SOUNDTRACK

If you have a Spotify account or similar, a great idea is to create a playlist before you go on the trip that includes the favourite songs of each person in the car; this way, you’re not stuck listening to children’s nursery rhymes, at least, not the whole time!

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