Taking a vacation with your family is exciting. Being able to leave your responsibilities behind, albeit only for a week or so, in order to spend time with your loved ones is something to look forward to. However, sometimes the road trip on the way to your destination can test everyone’s sanity. Kids aren’t always the best traveling companions.
Commit to making the journey to your destination a part of your vacation experience rather than something you just “have to suffer through.” Read below for 3 insightful ways to ensure that your vacation starts off right for you and your kids.
#1: Create a Game Schedule to Battle Boredom
Bringing games on your road trip is a no-brainer, but it’s more important to be strategic about which games to pack. You’ll want to choose specific games that are easy and quick to play in order to appease the short attention span of your kids. Creating a game schedule is a unique way to keep things from becoming stale.
Divide your trip into 30-minute increments of kids-only games, adult-included games, and silent time. For instance, for the first 30 minutes have your kids play a game by themselves such as cards or a video game. During the next 30 minutes, you’ll play a game that includes the adults such as “I spy” or the “License Plate Game.”
The last 30 minutes will consist of listening to music, watching a video using headphones, or reading a book. That’s an hour and a half already in the books. Is everyone still alive? Good!
#2: Try to Avoid Fast Food by Packing Your Own Food
Fast food restaurants are quick and simple—it’s in the name. If you are wanting to grab a bite to eat without stopping for a long period of time, fast food is the way to go. However, it’s not the healthiest option. Fast food can often leave a person feeling lethargic or even grumpy. The last thing you need is to be trapped in a car with tired and cranky kids.
Instead, bring along some healthy snacks to munch on when you’re feeling hungry. Pack a cooler full of water, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and trail mix to curve appetites until you’re ready to stop for the day. Once you’ve arrived at a good resting area, find a restaurant to enjoy a nice meal before turning in for the night.
#3: Take a Pit Stop And Have Recess
During road trips, it’s not uncommon for passengers to get a little restless—especially the kids. Try planning intentional pit stops along your route to let out some of that built up energy. If you can find a water park along your journey, take a break from the car and splash around a little bit.
If a water park isn’t nearby, find a local park and throw the frisbee or baseball around. Take a walk along a safe trail and burn some extra calories—just in case you couldn’t resist the fast food during your last stop.
Once you’ve exerted all your energy and gotten back on the road, you’ll more than likely notice that the vehicle is a lot more quite. Recess has a tendency to wear kids out. They will get some much-needed rest and you and your partner will have some peace and quiet if only for a little while.