With summer only a few sunrises away, many families in North America are planning to gas up, hit the open road, and spend some quality time together. Whether your road trip is going to last a few days or stretch over many weeks, cramming a family into a small space can be a catalyst for stress and worry. We believe that your road trip should consist of more memory-making than worry-creating, so here are a few tips to help ease the potential stressors that may arise so you can focus on family.
Worry about Mess During Road Trips
Spending time together in a vehicle for any extended amount of time means that there is potential for mess, and whether you drive a small car or a spacious van, a messy vehicle can lead to disorganization and inevitable stress. Here are some tips to help keep the mess contained.
- Ziploc bags – Store items like chargers, art supplies, legos, and toy cars in the bags to keep your children’s bags organized and your vehicle slightly less covered in clutter. Keep a few empty bags on hand for treasures your child finds enroute to your destination.
- Baby wipes – Whether your child is 2 or 22, having baby wipes on hand to help with drink spills, dirty hands, and road-side bathroom breaks can keep messes at bay.
Worry About Money During Road Trips
Family trips can sometimes feel hard on the wallet, so here are a few ways to make saving money a little easier while on the road.
- Plan cheap entertainment – A trip to your local library will provide a plethora of great (free!) books for every family member, or if you prefer reading on an electronic device, many libraries have apps that allow you to check out books electronically (don’t forget to pack your charger). Why not check out a book on classic road trip activities or conversation starters to get the whole family engaged? Don’t forget, you can also check out movies, music, and audiobooks. Nothing brings the family closer together than listening to Where the Red Fern Grows while driving across the country (yes, I know this from experience).
- Make snacks ahead of time – Snacks at gas stations can get pricey, so make your snacks ahead of time to save you some money on the road. A tackle box snack box is the perfect solution for a low-mess, cost-friendly snack option no matter what age your travel mates are.
- Download a gas app – Using a gas app to help determine which towns have the cheapest gas on your road trip route may save you a few pennies at the pumps.
Worry about Safety on Road Trips
The stress caused by a mess on the car floor or an empty wallet pale in comparison to any worry about your family’s safety.
- Vehicle inspection – Ensuring your vehicle is in top working order and checking your vehicle’s oil, fluids, and tire pressure (to name a few) are important to take care of before leaving the comfort of your regular mechanic.
- First Aid Kit – You can make your own by searching different first aid kits online, or many grocery stores have ready-made ones available.
- A high quality car seat – A car seat that is as user friendly as it is safe is a must when embarking on a family road trip.
When you are on a road trip with your family, there are bound to be stressors that come up. Messes happen and unexpected expenses arise, but the safety of your children should never be in question. So you can focus on the things that really matter, like making memories, and trying to decide which audiobook the whole family will enjoy.