When you travel with your children, do they constantly ask, “Are We There Yet?” We’ve all been there, either as the bored child sits there enduring a long journey, or as the frustrated parent trying to keep the peace as the kids duke it out in the back seat. This type of environment going on inside the vehicle can drive anyone nuts.
The best way to solve these road trip dilemmas is by asking yourself the following question…
What are some creative ways to make this family road trip one they’ll remember forever?
In life, you must ask the right questions in order to get the answers that could get you the results you desire.
The right answers equal solutions.
I will provide you with a few ideas that you and your family can take on the road.
Let’s get to it…
Mastery Gift Bags Loaded With Fun
Some parents create a “gift bag” idea. Halfway through the trip, each child receives a mystery gift bag with activity books, coloring materials, Colorforms to stick on the window or travel inside.
Other parents set aside lots of small gifts and hand them out every hour or two, saving the best ones for the more difficult points in the trip, where you’re about ready to pull your hair out.
Items could include natural fruit roll-ups, bubble gum, pipe cleaners, Mad Libs, maze puzzles, window markers, or for those especially long trips, an electronic tablet loaded with TV shows and movies your children love to watch.
Consider packing a small notebook and pencils or markers for each child to play a few of the old-school timeless classic games on the way.
Classic Games Never Go Out Of Style
There’s always the Alphabet Game, I-Spy, the license plate game, Scavenger Hunts, counting cows, the initials game, and paper and pencil games such as MASH, Tic Tac Toe, the dot and line game, cootie catchers/fortune tellers.
If your child has never played those games before, they’re missing out big time on having loads of fun!
A simple game such as Tic Tac Toe could provide hours of friendly competitive entertainment and only requires pencil and paper.
Travel Trivial Made Exciting
Want to make the trip educational?
Some parents test their children’s memories and reinforce where they’ve traveled and what they did by playing a family trip trivia game.
Each correct answer can score a piece of candy or the winner gets to choose which bed or room in the hotel he or she wants, etc.
You could ask questions like…
“Where did we wake up yesterday?”
“What was the name of the mountain range we saw?”
“Which major river did we pass?”
“Which President was born in this state?”
Those are all great ways to get your children to remember the specific details about the trip and learn a little something.
Entertain Using Maps
Whether it’s an old-school giant, foldable map, or an app on your smartphone, they can be a great way to teach your children some geography and also answer the age-old “are we there yet” question.
You can map the route you plan to take and have your child let you know how far away it is until the next stop, chart out interesting things to view along the way or compare whether it’s better to take route A or route B to get to Grandma’s.
Map games are great because they encourage participation and it satisfies your children’s need for attention, especially the little ones.
Use the Art of Puppet Making To Enhance the Experience
You could have your kids make paper bag puppets by decorating them using markers or art supplies.
Then have your children put on a live puppet show when you stop at a hotel or get to your destination.
Tip: Encourage your little ones to try and create their favorite cartoon, TV show, and movie characters, which will add more excitement.
Take Karaoke on the Road
Singing in the car is a classic way to spend a road trip, think of the old camp songs you used to sing as a kid.
What about 80s songs that your kids don’t know?
Beware, because they may call you old.
Karaoke versions of all kinds of songs are available for download or streaming for your trip.
Why not have a singing competition and reward all of your children regardless of who wins.
It’s about having fun, right?
Popular audiobooks can be a great way to pass the time. Everything from Harry Potter, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, to The Hobbit, can be a great way to bond.
Your children can become lost in all types of fantasy worlds, which will keep them engaged.
Before they know it, the destination will have been reached in the most enjoyable way.
Some families enjoy listening to comedy albums from family-oriented comedians.
Tell Interesting Stories
With the entire family trapped in a small box with no clear escape, is a great time to talk.
This is the perfect moment to tell those old funny stories about your grandma and grandpa, that funny thing your uncle did when he was a kid, how Mom and Dad met.
Try your best not to retell the same stories your children may have already heard, because they may call you out on it and say, “We’ve Heard That Story A Million Times.”
Soak up that time together and make it memorable. That’s what a family vacation is all about.
You now have several ideas that you can use during your next family road trip, which can help prevent your children from asking that annoying question of “Are We There Yet?”
Most children are content during shorter road trips that last for about 1 to 3 hours.
Once you start pushing past that 3-hour mark is when they become impatient, and then the complaining fest begins.
I know the last thing you want to do is yell at your children because you love them.
And besides, you want the road trip to be a fun and memorable experience.
Life is all about creating lasting memories.
I recommend that you take some of the ideas that you learned today and customize them to match your children’s personalities.
Have lots of fun during your next family road trip!