Almost every summer, our family makes at least one road trip. We’ve been from Philadelphia to Texas and back several times, and most of those drives were just me and my four kids.
The farthest I’ve done with the kids is Texas to Connecticut and back. In the years B.C. (before children), I also did trips from California to Philadelphia, from Connecticut to Arizona, and back again. This summer I’ll be driving from Philly to Chicago with the kids.
We actually really enjoy these trips. When I posted on my Facebook page asking for parents’ favorite tips for road trips with kids, some of the responses were, “no such animal,” “fly,” or “leave the kids at home.” However, I disagree, and so do more than a hundred other parents who shared their tips. It’s really all about the attitude, the approach, and the expectations.
Overall, we’ve had incredible amounts of fun on our road trips, and our kids have learned a ton, including how to handle the inevitable curve balls to the plan. There was one trip that turned into a slippery descent into hell, but that’s because we all came down with Swine Flu. (Click here for the story of that delightful little adventure.) Although it was pretty awful at the time, it’s now one of my kids’ favorite stories to tell.
Based on my experiences and those of the many, many parents who offered suggestions on Facebook, here are more than 24 of the most helpful tips for road trips with kids. Don’t just survive your trip–thrive on it! These are the kinds of memories that last forever.
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