This is a partnered post.
Going on a family road trip? Young kids can easily get irritable when stuck in a car for a long time. In order to make your time in the car more peaceful, here are a few ways to keep kids occupied.
Bring a tablet/laptop
A tablet or laptop could be perfect for watching films or TV series on. These could be streamed or you could download them beforehand. Alternatively, your kids could play games on it such as Drift Hunters. Make sure to charge the device up before you go and consider bringing a charger for the car or a portable charger. If you have two kids or more and only have one tablet/laptop, consider whether kids can share or whether it will simply cause disputes.
Bring some colouring/puzzle books
If you don’t want your kids staring at a screen for the whole journey, you could consider bringing some colouring books or puzzle books for them to complete. Just be sure to avoid anything too messy such as colouring sets with glitter and stickers.
Play an audiobook
You could allow kids to listen to an audiobook. This could be played through the car stereo or you could give them some headphones and play it through a phone or a tablet so that you can still listen to music.
Let them play navigator
Older kids may enjoy playing navigator with a map. You could challenge them by constantly asking where you are and getting them to tell you the road or nearest town. It’s a great way to stop kids asking ‘are we there yet?’ as they’ll be able to see on a map where you are.
Play family games
There are lots of games that you can play as a family on a long drive. This could include playing I-spy or the alphabet game. You can find a list of road trip games to play here. Avoid anything that you think may be too distracting.
Go easy on the drinks and snacks
Drinks and snacks will keep kids occupied, but you should be careful of giving them too much or the wrong types of foods and drinks. Giving your kids too many liquids could mean more impromptu toilet stops. Too much sugar could meanwhile make young kids hyperactive – which is not what you want on a long journey. If kids get car sick, you should also consider whether foods will trigger this more easily. Keep any snacks or drinks in the front so that you can control how much you give your kids.
Take frequent breaks
Make sure to stop every two hours for your sake and for your kids’ sake. Your kids will benefit from being able to stretch their legs and take in new surroundings. You may even be able to plan small family activities along the way – this will make the journey longer, but it could stop kids from getting bored.