A road trip with your children can be a rollicking good time, traumatic, chaotic, boring and exciting. In other words, it is a microcosm of life itself. Often, how you prepare and plan for your trip will be the big difference between whether your family will be spending more time laughing, singing songs and eating healthy snacks, than with one of the little tikes crying. Here are a few tips to ensure that your next road trip with your children is a successful one.
Before you travel, make sure that your car is in good working order and that your tyres are properly inflated. You should also look over your car insurance policy to see if it includes on-road assistance. If you currently only have the minimum, compulsory third party (CTP) insurance, you may want to consider increasing your coverage. If you get in an accident far from your home, CTP will probably not be adequate to take care of all of the expenses you may incur.
If you don’t think you can afford more insurance coverage, compare car insurance policy quotes online. You might be surprised to find that you can afford a better policy than you currently have.
Drive When They Are Asleep
Road trips can be boring for small children. If possible, try to drive through the boring parts while your little angels are still sleeping. For instance, if you leave your home before the sun rises, you can probably get two to three hours of driving in before your children wake up.
Don’t Be Too Ambitious
Yes, you want to reach your final destination as soon as possible, but try not to drive for long periods with your children without stopping. It’s important to factor into your driving schedule frequent bathroom stops, time for your kids to stretch and run around, as well as for sightseeing. Remember, no matter how many times you ask your children to go to the bathroom after a meal, they will probably still need to go the loo about half an hour to an hour down the road.
Pack An Extra Set of Clothing
With children, it never hurts to have an extra set of clothing within easy reach while you travel. You never know when a child, even an older one, might have a little mishap. If you don’t keep an extra set of clothes on hand, you could end up on the side of the road, having to drag out all of the suitcases from your boot to find the one with a child’s clothing in it.
If your final destination for the day is a beach or a hotel with a pool, and you will be arriving before check-in time, have your family either wear their swimsuits under their clothing or stow swimwear and beach towels in a small separate bag. That way if your room isn’t quite available at your arrival, your family can spend already some quality time on the beach or poolside while you wait.
Even if you are travelling on a road that appears to be empty, you never know when a kangaroo or other animal could suddenly wander into your path – particularly if you drive at dusk or dawn. Kangaroos can cause serious damage to your car, and it is possible that you or your passengers may be injured during the crash.
If you hit livestock, you are required by your auto insurance policy to report the incident. You may also have to use your insurance’s roadside assistance service if your car is badly damaged after the collision. The possibility of running unexpectedly into a large animal is another important reason why you should compare car insurance policies and have the best coverage possible before you travel.
For long trips, you might want to bring portable game systems and something for the children to watch DVDs on. However, it is also important to have your children put these items away when you are travelling through an interesting area so that you can point out sites. Remember, if all you wanted them to do was play games and watch DVDs, you might as well have just stayed home.
Pack A Snack
Having healthy snacks and drinks in the car will save you money and time since you won’t have to stop and pay high prices at a petrol station or convenience store for unhealthy foods for your hungry little tackers.
About the Author
Fernando spent 4 years as an auto mechanic and later received his degree in journalism. He still enjoys spending time under the hood.