Many families choose to travel by car when they go on holiday. For adults the drive itself is interesting enough to entertain, but when children are accompanying on the road trip, they can easily get antsy and bored. No matter how scenic the view, children need additional stimuli to entertain them in the car. By creating a box full of car-friendly, age appropriate toys and games that is stored in the car, you will be sure to have all the things needed to keep children entertained during car rides no matter how long the drive.
Picking What To Pack
Choosing what to pack in your child’s travel box of goodies is an excellent project for the child to help with. Giving them this responsibility not only allows them to contribute to trip preparation, it also ensures that the items are the type that will entertain and please the child.
If you want to surprise your child with this holiday road trip package, make a list of the things they enjoy the most. If they love art and craft pick up notebooks, sketchpads, markers, and crayons. If they enjoy learning consider packing flash cards, books, and educational workbooks, pencils -and always pack a pencil sharpener!
Another wonderful addition to any travel activity set is a children’s atlas. This will help the child to follow along on the road trip route and take part in the traveling activities. It is always more fun for children to look out the window and take in the sights when they have an estimate of their location.
Back-Up Entertainment For Children
Even the most well prepared parents will find that games, books, and puzzles only work to entertain a child for so long. If your road trip in the car is especially long, you may find yourself in need of some back-up child entertainment methods. Consider trying:
• Car games, such as I Spy, license plate identification, alphabet games, or creative games with your surrounding scenery.
• If you have traveled the route before, you may have some favorite landmarks. Encourage the child to keep watch for the landmarks.
• Journal keeping about the road trip can provide great entertainment for older kids.
If you have access to an in-car DVD player, reward children for their good behavior by allowing them to watch an age-appropriate film towards the end of the car trip. If that is not possible, set up another special reward they will enjoy to applaud them for focusing while in the car.
Keep Food Within Arms Reach
There are few things that make a traveling child unhappier than hunger or thirst. Be sure to pack a large quantity and variety of snacks and beverages for the car trip, and keep them within your arm’s reach. Juice boxes, biscuits, bottled water, and fruit chews are excellent travel snacks that don’t make much of a mess.
What To Avoid While Traveling With Children
Don’t expect to use activity kits and entertainment methods to replace breaks. Children will still need to get out of the car, stretch, and use facilities. It is wise to expect a stop at least every 2-3 hours.
Make sure there is a firm rule in place stating that dropped toys and activities will not be retrieved until the car is stopped. Children must know that it is unsafe to pick up toys while driving.