When I was younger, I actually got excited for road trips. I still do. And I didn’t have video games and a TV and all sorts of other gadgets in the car to keep me occupied. My mom and I played roadtrip games like the license plate alphabet game. My mom, by the way, was awesome and very creative at coming up with ways to keep me entertained on even the longest of trips.
One summer we drove, (just the two of us), from Michigan to Louisiana and back again. This was pre-GPS and my mom kept me busy looking at maps. I even figured out a fun shortcut that shaved about an hour off our trip and made me feel all-so-grownup and important.
Children today tend to be a bit more challenging to keep entertained and occupied on roadtrips but it’s not an impossible feat.
Tips for Roadtrips with Kids
- Plan Ahead – Involve your children in the planning process. Tell them ahead of time how long the trip will take, where’re you going, and show them on a map. A road trip can be stressful for a child when they don’t know the who, what, when and where of it all.
- Take Time to Smell the Proverbial Roses – Although as adults, we may be focused on getting to our destination as quickly as possible, 5 straight hours in a car is hard on a child. Plan in some stops and sightseeing along the way. Generally, a stop every 2 hours or less is good. Longer than that and you’re in for some grumpy little ones.
- Kid Friendly Sights – Rather than planning the day of shopping you’d like to do in Chicago, take into account what your kids would rather be doing. Aquariums, amusement parks, and weird tourist attractions will be a much bigger hit with the little ones.