Moms and dads will be hitting the road with the kids in droves this summer. To help turn drive-time into fun time, we asked some experts for tips on traveling. Before you pack up and head out on your next Global Discovery Vacations trek, consider HaveBabyWillTravel.com founder Corinne McDermott’s 5 Rs to Rosy Road Trips.
Google maps are great, but Corinne suggest you don’t just plan your trip from A to B. “Find a bit of time to really check out possible routes that may not be the quickest, but could be the most interesting. You’ll have to be making more stops now than when you hit the road pre-kids, so it would be great if those stops could be fun and even educational instead of just a truck stop/coffee shop.”
We agree with her when she says getting stuck on the side of the road mid-trip would be terrible, especially when you could prevent vehicle mishaps pre-trip. “In the weeks leading up to your trip, have your car serviced, with fluid levels checked and tires balanced. The day before you leave, double-check the tire pressure and make sure your membership with a roadside assistance provider is up to date.”
When it comes to driving, you need your hands on the wheel. So as Corinne says, keep snack packs, travel games, cleaning wipes and whatever else you might need on the road close by. “Prepare a bag specifically for addressing your needs while en route and make sure A.) you know exactly where it is in the car and B.) you can reach it without unbuckling your seat belt. Wherever you go, always make sure you have wipes and hand sanitizer nearby.”
The temptation to drive straight through can be strong, but can really be detrimental to your road trip when you’re traveling with children. “Pulling the kids out of their beds and plunking them in their car seats sounds like an ideal way to gain some ground when the tots are asleep, only that trick just might not work for you (it didn’t for us). If you’ll be driving in shifts, make sure you can actually sleep in the car if you’re on shift number two.”
Driving is taxing, and many of your fellow travelers are weary and may be at their wits’ end. You can make your drive half the fun of your vacation if you take her advice and relax. “Take a deep breath and laugh at the little things. That jerk that just cut you off is likely not going to be spending quality time with their family time anytime soon, and you already are.”
Research, repair, reach, rest and relax—keep these Rs in mind when you hit the road. You can read Corinne’s full article, Road Trip Tips—The 5 Rs!, published on her family travel blog designed to inspire, motivate and help families travel with babies, toddlers and young children.
Do you have any tips for road trips? Please share yours in the comments below.