How to prepare for long distance travelling with the kids

Family road trip
Family road trip

School’s out and the time for quality family time is here. But before you can enjoy the beach or grandma’s cooking, you have to deal with the long trip to get to your destination.

As you prepare, DRUM has some suggestions to help you keep the kids entertained, and your sanity intact. 

1. Leave early, and drive slowly

It’s no secret that most South African’s seem to forget the rules of the road when the festive season arrives, so leaving early will help you avoid the commotion on the road. This suggestion also has another benefit as it allows for regular stops that can help your children run free. From chilling in a park to a lazy lunch, the breaks will allow everyone to stretch their legs and experience different scenery.

2. In-car activity

With cellular network not always available on a long distance road trip, it’s important to have non-internet entertainment available for children. Colouring books, reading books, movies and sing-along songs are always guaranteed to get everyone excited and involved in group activities. Other games such as ‘I spy’ and ‘counting animals’ can also help pass the time.

3. Pack the essentials

While the need to go to the bathroom may crop up every few hours, unnecessary stops for things such as water and food can be avoided by packing them for your journey. Sandwiches, sweets and nuts are always guaranteed to be a winner for a long journey.

4. Get into the back seat

While the aim is to get to the destination, road trips are also a good time to fit in family time. The parent that is not driving can bond with the children by sitting with them to either join in on their games or to listen in on their stories. Some face-to-face contact helps with crankiness of a long trip and makes them forget about how much further they still have to travel.

5. Sleep

“I’m bored” – it’s a sentence every parent dreads on a long trip but sometimes that can be combated by letting your little one just go to sleep. This will allow for some peace and quiet in the car as it makes time pass quickly for the children. It’s also great advice for the driving adult when they feel themselves getting tired. They should swap with the other parent in order to rest.

Sources: Wikihow, The Guardian,

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