This week saw our family take our annual road trip from Brisbane to Banana in Central Queenland (7hrs) to visit friends who own a cattle and crop property. We love it. It is a real highlight in our family’s calendar. We have been doing the same trip for 7 years and here are our top 10 tips for road trips with kids:
1. Service your car and check your tyres. I know it is boring but it really will give you peace of mind as you travel along.
2. Charge your phone. Make your day better by having your phone fully charged right from the start.
3. Map out your trip. Know your route well. Sit down and work out exactly where you are going, which exits you’ll need to take and at the same time, plan your stops.
4. Plan your stops. Before you go plan out where you are going to stop along the way. It is a good idea to keep in mind things like petrol stations, bathroom breaks, food stops etc. AND if you can suss out a playground at a couple of the stops so the kids can have quick run around and stretch.
5. Pack the car the night before. This is a game changer. If you have everything in the car ready to go the night before it will make the morning so much easier, especially if you are going to set out in the early hours.
6. Set out early. The earlier you can get going in the morning the better. This is actually our kids’ favourite part of the trip – being carried down to the car in the dark in their pyjamas. Very novel! Chances are they will fall back to sleep in the car if you leave when it’s still dark…
7. Don’t go too early with the in-car entertainment. By this, I’m talking games, audio books, toys, snacks, devices etc. The longer you can hold out on these, the better. You don’t want them to peak too early and get bored faster. Speaking of games, we have put together 5 car games ideas to check out. Click here.
8. Have water & snacks on board. This is an essential tip for your road trip. Having water is a must and a few sneaky snacks up your sleeve is great – you can meter these out on the trip in between stops.
9. Make a family playlist. Before you go sit down and get everyone to choose their favourite say 10 songs and add them to a ‘Family Road Trip’ playlist. This way everyone is happy and you have a variety of music. On ours we have everything from ‘The Wiggles’ to ‘Coldplay’!
10. Vomit bag. I have saved this one until last because it is unlikely to happen. BUT if it does, you want to be prepared! You can buy these from the chemist and have them tucked away in the glove box just in case 🙂
I love a road trip and the kids do too. It takes them out of their every day, gives them a chance to observe the world around them and the final destination is always worth it!!