travel

Five Road Trip Tips For Families

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five road trip tips

Road trips are a fantastic way to travel and have an adventure with your family.

Often times, it’s cheaper than flying, and I have found the actual trip to be as much of a fun adventure as the destination itself. With a little planning and a few tips, you can make your road trip amazing and fun.

Here are my favorite five road trip tips for families:

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1. In Car Entertainment

Plan for plenty of entertainment for your little ones. When the scenery becomes less exciting, with the same landscape for miles, bring out the electronic devices. These are perfect for movies and games. Make sure you have individual headphones for each child to cut down on noise too! This is the time Pete and I enjoy a conversation with each other… or we continue to plan our trip in these moments.

Books, a few favorite toys, and a new sticker book are also great options for entertainment. Buy little trinkets from your favorite dollar store, wrap them up and allow your little one to open a new one throughout the trip… this will help them love road trips even more!

2. Comfort

It can get uncomfortable in the car on long trips. Bring a pillow and/or small blanket for the little ones to use to rest their heads on or hold on their laps and get comfy. They also help with nap time. My oldest (15yo) loves car naps just as much as my little 5 year old so don’t forget the older kids!

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3. Think ahead about food, drink and bathroom stops.

Plan your stops before you even start your trip. Knowing when the next stop will be gives everyone something to look forward to and it really helps to break up the long ride.

We always plan ours for every 2-3 hours. Aside from the the distance, our stops also have to have the following things for us to stop there. 

  • bathrooms
  • gas
  • food/drinks
  • a place to stretch our legs

Our favorite way to stay fueled during road trips is with TruMoo. It’s great because it has no high fructose syrup and their farmers pledge “no artificial growth hormones”. Plus it provides 8 essential nutrients that kids need.

The smaller bottles are perfect when we are on the go too!

We love TruMoo right out of the bottle on road trips, but at home there are tons of other ways to enjoy it! And you can  Find TruMoo Recipe inspiration on Pinterest.

We’ve been able to find TruMoo Chocolate at a lot of different locations here locally and while we are traveling. For product information and availability, visit TruMoo online.

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4. No more than 7 hours of driving a day.

We’ve done 16 hour drives and all the way down to 4 hour drives. What we’ve found is that our perfect amount of driving time to be 6 hours, but no more than 7 hours a day. We are planning a cross county road trip and knowing our daily limit really helps make the planning easier and the trip itself more enjoyable. 

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5. Safety First

Make sure your car gets a checkup before you go… especially the tires. Keep a stocked first aid kit within reach with any regularly used medications and bandages. I also like to makes sure my car is completely cleaned out before we leave so here are less things moving around in the car. 

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Remember that your road trip is a part of your vacation.

It’s the perfect time to start the fun. Play games, sing silly songs, tell jokes and have lots of laughs!

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Be sure to Join the TruMoo community on Facebook. too!

Where do you want to go on your next road trip?

Heather Reese
the authorHeather Reese
Heather Delaney Reese is the storyteller and photographer behind the lifestyle and family travel blog It's a Lovely Life®! In addition to traveling 150+ days a year, she also helps new bloggers build successful blogging businesses.

70 Comments

  • We just went on a road trip and for us, it is all about the snacks and entertainment!

  • Great tips! I wish we did road trips more. I think we would if we didn’t live in the city and only rely on subways and street cars! Then we would an shave the freedom to!

  • We always plan ahead for food drink and bathroom stops. Getting hangry while stuck in the car together is the worst.

  • I haven’t tried TrueMoo yet, seems much better than regular chocolate milk. And I’m with you on in car entertainment. We have a built in DVD player in our SUV. Its magical for my six and three year old.

  • We would love to go to Texas to visit my husband’s extended family. He hasn’t been out since he was a baby, and I have never been so it would be a great family road trip!

  • My parents used to drive 24 hours straight to get from St. Louis to Key West on more than a couple family vacations. I am no stranger to LONG road trips. I agree, no more than 7 hours if you don’t want to be too tired to have fun when you get there. Thanks for sharing your tips.

  • If we’re road tripping as a family for fun, we like to keep it around 6 hours, too. If we’re road tripping to get where we’re going, I’m a big fan of the rotating driver method and stopping to hit the bathroom. =D

  • Taking road trips can be fun, but also really hard! I am going to have to try some of these tips! They are great ones!

  • These are great tips for family road trips. We usually take one or two a year but we keep the driving to less than 8 hours!

  • Road trips were always fun when the kids were growing up. I agree with limiting the driving time. I can’t do more than 7 hours at a time.

  • Remembering that the road trip is part of the vacation is the hard one for me to remember. I used to do so many 16 hour drive days to get home on leave that I still have that mentality now. Kids don’t like that, neither does the wife.

  • TruMoo is a great drink to bring on a road trip. It is always so much fun to pile into the car and go on an adventure.

  • Were going to be doing more road trips this summer and I think that true moo would be a great thing to have in the cooler! What a treat for the kids.

  • We’ve done the most about 4 hour drives with our kids and the entertainment is definitely key. I worry about having too much snacks and drinks because it = more bathroom breaks. My kids do love Tru Moo though!

  • These are excellent tips. It has been a while since we have traveled. I hope to change that one of these days. When we go somewhere, we try to stop every few hours too. Most of the time we end up driving more than 7 hours.

  • We are leaving on a 12 hour road trip with three under four in a week! We have done it many times, just pushing through the driving works best for us! But we also love chocolate milk for the road, in fact it is my husbands go to every time!

  • Honestly, I’m not looking to road trip for a while. We just moved to Florida, and I’m too busy soaking up all the awesomeness to leave!

  • We generally travel 12 to 15 hours when we plan a vacation. We also use the 7 hr max rule. It just works better that way. Our next trip is a rafting excursion.

  • We’re going on a road trip in just about 2 weeks. Great tips! Such awesome memories a re made on long car rides!

  • I love love love roadtrips because of 1) the scenery relaxes me; 2) gas station stop overs; and 3) all the food that I get to pack and eat in the car. Lol. Gas stations here in my country have leveled up big time and there’s always a nice, new restaurant to try. I kind of like to eat in the car so yup, that’s one roadtrip activity that I like to do because it makes eating in the car legit.

    I’ve read about TruMoo but unfortunately, it isn’t available yet in my country 🙁

  • All these are great tips indeed. We love to go on road trips. Trumoo is the favorite drink for my kids too. I always plan upfront for our road trips as better planning is needed when you are taking your kids with you.

  • It is smart to check the tires, definitely. I remember years ago we had loose lugnuts on a tire and it almost came off while driving!

  • I have great memories of road trips with my family when I was younger. We didn’t have iPads or DVD players, but still had a ton of fun. In car entertainment is critical to your sanity.

  • This are some good tips. Road trips are so much more enjoyable when you do some good planning ahead of time.

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