At times, travelling with kids can be, well, challenging. Keeping them fed, entertained and comfortable is no easy feat, especially throughout an extended road trip. There are, however, ways to make the trip much more enjoyable for Mum, Dad, and the little ones.
1. Pack a lot of games
The cardinal rule of travelling with children is to pack a lot of games and activities. This will keep them amused and distracted plus give you some downtime or allow you to navigate or drive with ease. On the other hand, enjoying some game time with your kids is a great opportunity to bond. We won’t list all the games you can pack, rather we’ll just leave this right here…Thrifty’s Holiday Games for Kids.
2. Bring travel-safe snacks
It might seem obvious, but this tip can be overlooked due to the last-minute rush of packing car snacks. You want to ensure your road trip snacks are simple, healthy and hydrating. So, avoid chocolate as it melts and is full of sugar, crackers can crush easily and cause a real mess, and yoghurt (well, just don’t go there). In fact, rather than advising on what you shouldn’t pack, here’s a write up of the best road trip snacks we compiled earlier.
3. Charge the iPad
An easy win. Although at home it’s probably not the best idea to leave the kids glued to the iPad, the road is a whole new ballgame and they need to be kept entertained. Make sure to charge the iPad before you leave the house and stock up on some kid-friendly films and shows. Pull it out when you really need some quiet time and enjoy a nap while you can.
4. Map it out
A little bit of prep can go a long way. Map out your journey or hire a GPS system so you don’t get lost and you can engage with your children (this should avoid the constant ‘Are we there yet?’). It’s also a good opportunity to get them involved – perhaps get them to pick out some things they’d like to see along the way?
5. Sort out the seats
If you’re travelling with a toddler and hiring a car, you’ll need to ensure they are strapped in safely. Thrifty can provide both forward and rear-facing baby seats, as well as booster seats, and are able to assist with installation*. Conditions apply to the number of seats a vehicle can hold safely, so check with us before booking your car.
6. Have ample room
In addition to making sure you have the right seating equipment, ensure your car can fit the seats in comfortably and leave enough room for you to buckle the kids up. Thrifty has a great range of large cars and for those with more than a few young ones, we’ve got people movers to fit them all in!
RELATED READ: Best Rental Cars for Family Road Trips
7. Consider driving overnight
If you have a long journey ahead or are driving interstate, an overnight drive might be just the way to go. If your toddler can sleep in the baby seat, you and your partner can take shifts driving. If you’re making the trip alone, be sure to stop every few hours for a rest or extend the journey over a couple of days.
There you have it, holidays with kids never seemed easier. If you’ve been putting off travelling Australia with kids, hopefully this post has eased your concerns and got you in planning mode! Thrifty can happily assist you with most of the equipment you’ll need for a family road trip, including a GPS, stroller, and prepaid fuel so that you can focus on the fun times and feel assured that you are in safe hands.