The family holiday season is almost upon us! And that holiday you’ve been planning for months is within touching distance. Planning a family holiday requires as much organization and precision as a military operation, and if you’re planning a stress-free holiday then you’ll need to start planning and packing well in advance…
The travel documents, all the travel information, your route, the sun protection, clothes, shoes, pool inflatables, the camera so you capture all those wonderful moments – you can make a collage from all your photos here – the holiday money…it’s not something you can leave until the night before. However, one thing that parents often feel they can’t control, is how well their children travel. In fact, many parents positively dread travelling with their little ones, purely because they can’t console or comfort them in the same way they would at home. So, with this in mind, I’ve collected some of the simplest ways you can keep your little ones content and happy whilst you travel by car.
Good luck – and enjoy your holiday!
Go at a different pace
When travelling with the kids it’s understandable that you’ll want to reach your destination as soon as possible. Which often means taking the quickest route, avoiding stops in order to reduce time on the road and more often than not – lots of additional stress. If you’re doing the driving, or your partner is, you need to understand that things are going to have to go at a different pace to normal. Accept that there might be delays on the main roads and consider taking a longer route to avoid being stuck in traffic, accept that you might need to pull over more than once for the kids to use the bathroom and stretch their legs. Remember, a twenty minute stop so the kids can explore a service station is much more bearable than 45 minutes of screaming and distress.
This is imperative. I personally find that any road trip should have an abundance of travel-friendly snacks. So, make it special for your little ones. Let them help you pack a packed lunch – sandwiches, crisps, yoghurts and fruit and then a secondary bag that’s filled with nibbles to keep those hunger pangs at bay. Remember, there’s nothing worse than a hungry child that’s strapped into a car seat!
Listen to Audiobooks
Instead of letting them plug into video games and movies, why not try bonding together over audiobooks the whole family will enjoy? Here is a list of the 17 best audiobooks for family road trips to help keep everyone happy and avoid the dreaded question, “Are we there, yet?”.
I like to create special travelling packs for my little ones. Usually, a little bag that contains some items that will keep them content for a while and occupied in traffic. Some little toys, some colouring pages and pencils, playdoh, or even just a note pad and pen so they can write or draw what they’re looking forward to the most on holiday.
You might be stuck in a traffic jam that goes on for miles, and it’s now that your little one decides to have the biggest tantrum they’ve ever had. Take a deep breath and try to stay calm with these clever tips. Easier said than done I know, but it won’t last forever and by the end of your holiday you won’t even remember it.
Be sure to check out our post on the must haves for surviving any long family road trip as well!