Although you wouldn’t believe it right now as we had a thunderstorm today and rain the past few days, the summer is almost upon us and we are all thinking about road trips and holidays with our families and friends. Whilst travelling with a bunch of grown-up and relatable friends can be fun and exciting, travelling with kids and your entire family is a different ballpark altogether. In this blog post I will explore how to make a road trip with the whole family less stressful.
Going on holiday or a road trip with parents, siblings and children is different because you are more likely to suffer disagreements across the different generations. The holiday needs to be suitable for everyone, across all age groups, as well as budget friendly for all.
So what sort of accommodation do you pick? Hotel or holiday home? Resort or residence? The choice is vast and everything depends on your needs. If you are a large family, it is preferable to choose to spend your holidays in an apartment for rent for families. This can be a cost-effective and practical solution. If you choose to book a family apartment, the costs to be paid are lower as you will split the cost amongst yourself. The price could be much cheaper than having to book individual hotel rooms to cater for everybody. You will have more freedom as you do not have to be at a hotel, for example, at set hours for certain meals. You can also save money by making your own meals as you might have a fully functioning kitchen to use.
Another great choice is a cruise holiday. This is a slightly more expensive choice in some cases, but it includes a great deal in the upfront cost, such as food and entertainment.
Whilst camping is another great choice, consider any elderly relatives. They might not be happy sleeping in a tent, so look for a holiday park with mobile homes with proper beds and an ensuite so everyone is comfortable.
Tips to make a whole family road trip stress free
Whilst you may get some freedom from your siblings, parents, grandparents and whichever other family members are with you whilst at the holiday resort, that might not be so true when you’re on the road. You have to reach your destination and you may all be travelling together. It might be more economical to take one car or to hire a minibus to get everyone there together rather than taking multiple cars at a much higher cost in fuel.
Staying in a car for many hours can be exhausting for both the parents and children. Children quickly get bored so it’s vital they have lots of entertainment and plenty of food and water to last the whole journey. If kids start getting irritable then the whole car load of your family is going to start getting irritable!
Here are some tips to make sure your family road trip is the adventurous journey you have dreamt of:
- The size of the car – it must be spacious and comfortable with plenty of room for everyone’s luggage and enough leg room too. No one wants to be cramped up and squished into a tiny space for hours on end with no escape. It might be a good idea to hire a minivan if no one has a car large enough. This will give everyone plenty of space and you can spread the cost between each adult. It will probably work out cheaper than taking individual cars.
- Snacks – make sure you prepare a travel kit for the car with plenty of healthy snacks and water. You don’t want to load the kids up with sugary snacks to make them hyper in the small space, so choose your snacks wisely. Opt for dried and fresh fruit, rice crackers and bread sticks. This will also save you money at the service stations as their snacks are at a premium.
- Toilet breaks – make sure you know where there are service stops on your planned route as you can guarantee the kids will need a toilet break whilst only giving you a moment’s notice, no matter how many times you’ve already asked them!
- Leg stretch and picnic stop – if your journey is very long then you’ll want to factor in mealtimes such as lunch or dinner. Pack a picnic if you don’t want to spend money on food at a service station. It’s also a good idea to plan in a stop so everyone can get out and have some space to breathe and stretch their legs. Let the kids run around and burn off some steam and hopefully they’ll sleep the rest of the way!
- Pack toys for the kids – it’s no secret that kids get really bored on even the shortest of journeys, so just imagine how quickly they will get restless in a car for hours on end! Make sure they have plenty of entertainment to keep them occupied.
And most importantly – stay calm!
Depending on how well you get on with your family, there might be comments or things said that you don’t agree with, but just stay calm. You’ll be on your amazing holiday soon! The same with the kids – if they’re getting irritable just remember how bored you were as a child on a long journey. Stay calm and try to pacify every situation instead of blowing up and making it worse for everyone.
Planning your journey and holiday with the right accommodation, a suitable sized car, plenty of toilet stops, food and entertainment will ensure everyone can enjoy a whole family road trip.
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