Whether you’re taking a road trip, traveling to a special event, or moving across the country, if you’re planning on taking a long car ride with your kids, you’ve got to come into the situation prepared in order to avoid a complete and total meltdown, both from your kids and from yourself. So to help you get ready for this kind of endeavor, here are three tips for keeping your kids busy and happy on long car trips.
Give Them A Task
Being stuck in the car isn’t much fun for anyone. But when you’re strapped into a seat that won’t let you move when you’re used to being able to run around all day, it only makes sense why kids get frustrated and bored on long car rides.
To help them pass the time without completely shutting off the world around them, Melanie Radzicki McManus, a contributor to HowStuffWorks.com, suggests that you give your kids a task to do during the ride. This could be something as simple as making a piece of jewelry out of craft supplies or coloring a picture for a friend or family member. For older kids, you could ask them to learn a new car ride game to teach everyone else or have them pick where you’ll eat dinner at the end of the day. Just giving them a task that will take a bit of time and get their mind off the road can make the day go by much smoother.
Pack Smart Snacks
To keep your kids happy while on the road, you’ve got to consider packing enough snacks so that no one ever gets hungry or cranky. However, you’ll also want to be careful about what snacks you choose to bring.
Ideally, Lisa Milbrand, a contributor to FamilyVacationCritic.com, recommends that you don’t bring any snacks that are going to be too messy. Since you’ll have to just hand the snacks back to your kids and can’t help them to stay clean or keep things contained, you could wind up with big messes to clean up at the end of the day. So bringing food that’s healthy and easy to clean up should be the goal.
Make Good Use Of Electronics
Electronics can be a lifesaver when on a long car ride with kids. But if you make electronics the only thing you have your kids using on the trip, they could burnout from them quickly.
Knowing this, Annie Grey, a contributor to BirthAndBeyondMagazine.com, suggests that you download some new apps that can keep your kids entertained while in the car. Also, you should try to use electronics as a last resort after your kids aren’t satisfied with any other option for occupying their attention.
If you’re going to be taking a long car ride with your kids in the near future, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you keep them happy and busy along the way.