Planning a road trip with toddlers might seem like a daunting task. You will have to keep the little one well-fed, slept, and entertained while on the toad. If the little one cries throughout the journey, you will have to find a way to calm them while ensuring that the entire family remains safe and sane. All parents go through this but planning a road trip with kids is not as difficult as it may sound. There are some ways you can ensure a smooth ride for everyone. Let’s take a look at a few tips.
1. Try not to overdo it
You need to remember that infants and toddlers will not have the patience for very long road trips that you might plan. An ideal road trip with toddlers will be really short ones. Once your kids grow, their attention span expands and they will be able to sit in the car for a long period of time and remain engaged in their activities. If you have to travel a long-distance, you must schedule a daytime drive during their nap time. You can use head supports for car seats to ensure they sleep comfortably in the car without their head falling on either side. If you have a long distance drive, it is best to break the journey into manageable parts with stops for eating, sleeping, and playing. If possible, get in the backseat with the toddler for some part of the road trip.
- Play in the backseat
When traveling with family or another adult, you can sit in the backseat for a part of the trip. This is an opportunity to bond with the baby. Remember to carry some toys and books and some goodies with you. It will keep them entertained and engaged. When you sit in the backseat with them, they will not feel lonely and will remain occupied.
- Use snacks as a distraction
The best way to divert your little one during the road trip is through a bottle or finger foods. You can use bottles for babies and finger foods for toddlers. You can also join them in the backseat and feed them. Keep them properly buckled in the car seat so when they are eating, you do not have to constantly hold them. If the little one is still nursing, you may have to schedule stops for mealtime. Pack travel snacks for toddlers including cheese cubes and chopped foods. Put them in different containers and provide them with one when they become impatient.
- Think of all the family members on the trip
Your number one priority will be your toddler but you must not ignore the other members of the family while you are on the road. You need to arrive at the destination safe and sound. Ensure that the vehicle is up to date before you set out and carry an emergency kit with you. Remember to have a “Baby on Board” sign on the car to protect your little one. Keep loose items like camping gear in the trunk. Ensure that you have enough snacks and water for all the family members.
- Enjoy music during the journey
Music is a great way to bring the family together at any time. It is a good tool to keep families entertained and content during the trip. Carry music that everyone can enjoy and remember to have something for the toddler too. If your child has a favorite, remember to carry it with you. You must make a mix of playlists on your phone. Include different melodies that can appeal to everyone traveling with you.
- Carry a bucket
A lot of parents will not understand the importance of a bucket until they learn it the hard way. Always carry a bucket on the road trip and have it within an arm’s distance. In case the child has stomach flu or a bout of motion sickness, the bucket will come in handy.
- Enjoy your favorite movies on the road
You might not allow your kids to watch movies or television at home but you should consider bending the rules for the trip. Whenever you are on a road trip with a baby or toddler, you must carry movies that keep them engaged. But make it clear that movies are only an option when away from home so that they do not expect a movie every time they sit in the car.
If you plan well, traveling with kids can be a lot of fun. If you are fortunate, your toddler might take a good nap in the car. The first step is to choose the destination. If you get it right, you will not have to worry about the toddler. Do not drive too far away. If this is the first road trip, start with a destination closer to home.