Traveling with your family this summer? As a mom, I am always looking for ways to make traveling with kids easier. These 25 travel hacks for kids will help you as you prepare for your next family trip…. from packing for a trip to the ride itself.
My family and I are planning some fun vacations for the next few months, but with four kids, it can get hard to go more than just a few hours. With that being said- it is getting a little easier now that the kids are getting older. They can keep themselves entertained with electronics, notebooks, crayons, and toys, so that has made our trips much easier!
Here are some travel hacks.. that make traveling easier! 🙂
1- I love the idea of having each outfit packed in a ziplock bag by day, so you just grab a bag and it is filled with everything that you need (shirt, pants, underwear, socks…).
*Put a dryer sheet or 1/2 of a dryer sheet in the ziplock bags to give the clothes a wonderful smell when you pull them out for the day!
Don’t forget this tip–>> Buy travel-sized items for the trip & toss it in the trash when you are done (toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash, body wash…)! It makes the trip so much easier for just a few dollars.
2- I also love to keep the car organized!! I recently ordered these backseat organizers on Amazon (I love that our kids can keep their drinks, tablets & toys in them.): The one that we have (pictured below) is the Luxury Car Back Seat Organizer with Thermo Pockets, DVD Player & Tablet Holder – Touch Screen Pocket up to 11″, Multifunctional Back of Seat Organizer.
3- To keep boredom at bay, try making your own travel binder. Put everything into your little pencil case and place it into a binder. Print out their favorite character for them to color on the way. Our kids loved it.
4- Keep a first aid kit in the car. A DIY first aid kit is easy to make when you throw in some bandaids, Tylenol, cleaning spray for boo-boos and other things you might need to help your family be prepared for the unexpected.
5- Road trips can easily become pretty expensive with gas costs and food costs. One way to help save money on road trips is by packing your food and planning things out ahead of time- plan out rest areas that have room to run or stop and have a picnic at a park.
6- Give your kids times to watch for. Get a wake-up light and use it to your advantage. When the light on this turns GREEN, we will be stopping to get lunch soon. When it turns GREEN again, we will be stopping to take a break.
Ps- you make need a car adapter to plug it in. I don’t know what I would do without mine!
7- If you have a long car trip, grab a bucket and string and make a bucket pulley system ahead of time- fill it with things they will need.
8- Have books on tape and listen to them during the trip. This one is our favorite book on tape, by far!
9- When we aren’t listening to a book, we actually watch Netflix on my laptop because you can connect your laptop to the internet while in your car, so it makes it easy. I set the laptop on the console area in between the driver & passenger seat and everyone can watch.
10- Keeping a variety of toys and games flowing is always helpful when you are traveling with kids. Having some clever travel games for little ones makes it easier and can see how they would be a great distraction.
11- Kids love countdowns of any kind so the idea of doing a countdown to arrival is just brilliant, like this one where each hour they get a new activity to complete (you can write them on the back of the numbers).
12- Break out some Road Trip Bingo for your kids. This fun game will give some variety to the trip and is a great distraction, looking for things and marking them off as you go.
13- It can be hard to avoid all the junk food when traveling, which is why I love the idea of using tackle boxes or rainbow loom box-kits to hold a variety of healthy snacks from pretzels to cheerios to Chex Mix.
14- Use a cookie sheet to create an instant activity tray for your little ones when traveling- it is like a mini desk in the car! All that you need to make this is a cookie sheet, a Dremel tool, and some velcro!
15- Legos are always fun but can be hard to keep track of when traveling (especially traveling with small children). This is why, when I saw the idea for a Portable Lego Kit, I just loved it. Just a little tote or lunch box and some legos! So simple and creates wonderful playtime opportunities.
16- When the time in the car or airplane is going to be long, a scavenger hunt is a great option. Let the kids look for certain landmarks, cars and other things!
17- Print off this cute license plate checklist and look for the license plates along the way- see who can cross them off first. Do they see one from PA? What about NC?
19- Create an I Spy Bag for the kids to enjoy during some quiet time during travels- fill it with rice and a lot of little trinkets. Give them a list of what is in there and let them search for it.
20- Make some Road Trip Behavior Clips– this is a great way to encourage good behavior on the trip: Its a really easy concept- if the paper clip with your letter on it stays up, you are doing great. If the clip comes down for misbehaving, you miss out on the next fun thing (ice cream, running break, etc…)
21- Prep some Are We There Yet? bags ahead of time to use during those moments of near breakdown- they will buy you an extra thirty minutes when you pull them out and surprise the kids.
22- Creating a diaper changing station to take on the road with you. Keep diapers, wipes, and a plastic bag for dirty diapers in the back of your car. It can be a lifesaver of an idea when you are traveling with little ones.
23- Use this checklist for packing tips. This way, you can be prepared ahead of time.
24- While traveling, it can be hard to keep kids entertained, but this list of non-technology activities are perfect to keep any child busy- the idea to look for drivers wearing sunglasses is a great tip and so much fun! You can vary these ideas to include drivers wearing hats, kids with blue shirts, minivans, motorcycles, etc..
25- Grab your Kindle! We fill our tablets with new apps before we leave and we go about 1-2 hours without turning them on. After we decide to get them out, the kids are so excited and they play on them for a few hours, giving the driver some peace and quiet to concentrate on the drive.
I hope that these tips were helpful!
Ps- This Summer Survival Kit and get a TON of free printables for your trip.
NEED MORE IDEAS? Check out my favorite tips for going to Disney with your family…