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KID-TESTED ROAD TRIP TIPS

Are you planning a trip with the family? Is it going to be a road trip? There are so many places to explore in this beautiful country. Whether you’re headed on vacation or to a family function, we all want to avoid the most dreaded words on a family car trip – “Are we there yet?”
It’s hard for kids to sit still. And sitting still while buckled inside a vehicle can be an even bigger challenge. Distraction can help pass the time, and taking breaks gives kids a chance to stretch and move around. Make the best of a long road trip with these kid-tested tips:

PLAN AHEAD
If you don’t mind driving at night, dress the kids in their pajamas and drive while it’s dark out. Hopefully they will sleep through the night. Added bonus – there may be less traffic too. If possible, try to build in some extra time in case you need to make an unexpected stop, or if traffic is slow.
When planning your route, look for parks along the way or fun places to stop and get out. Bring along a little picnic and even a ball so the kids can burn off some energy running around.
Pack your own first aid kit with some medicine and band aids. It’s like insurance, if you pack it you probably will not need to use it, but if you forget it at home, you may need to search for a pharmacy en route.
Don’t forget your camera; you never know what sights you may see along the way or what silly faces you can capture.

KEEP THEM BUSY
Pack activities and snacks for the kids – make sure to have them within easy reach, and not in the trunk!

Change it up. Electronic games are inevitable and a way to pass the time, but also pack in a few books, magazines, plus colouring and sticker activity books for younger kids.

For older kids, buy them a small journal or notebook and have them record their journey. This gives them a private place to reflect and doodle. They can even be creative and decorate the book with stickers, sharpies or washi tape to make it their own.

Younger kids can do some journaling too by drawing and colouring a picture of their favourite activity that happened that day, or by writing a few sentences about their family adventures.

Play a travel game. Print off travel bingo or scavenger hunt games, or make up a game as you go. Check for out of province license plates, play a round of I Spy, practice letter recognition by looking for names on road signs, or work in some math and colour identification by having them tally different coloured vehicles you see on the road.

I’M HUNGRY!
Most kids tend to eat smaller snacks than one big meal, so try packing some healthy snacks and a few special treats (to reward good behavior, or as an incentive to make it to the next stop).
Take along a small cooler or lunch bag with fresh fruit, veggies, cheese and crackers to nibble on and extend the time before the next rest break.
Don’t forget a refillable water bottle, preferably a small one so they stay hydrated, but don’t drink too much (to avoid an unexpected bathroom break).
Baby wipes are your friend. Even if kids are a bit older, wet wipes help clean up sticky fingers and spills.
Be sure to pack a small garbage bag to keep the mess under control.

BE QUIET
Electronic games and videos can keep the kids busy for a while, and may stop them from bothering a sibling (unfortunately there are no guarantees).
Download some audiobooks, and set up a favourite song play list – don’t forget to pack the headphones.

GET COMFY
Dress is layers: wear a sweater instead of a bulky jacket.
Pack slippers or cozy socks so they can get comfortable in the vehicle.
Pack a small pillow and blanket for the kids to rest and get comfy.
And remember, it’s not the destination, it’s the journey!
HAPPY TRAILS FROM YOUR FRIENDS AT EASTSIDE AUTO SERVICE!

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This post was written by eastside