Hitting the open road for a summer adventure can be a great way to take in the best of your holiday destination, from off the beaten track locations to stunning expanses of countryside.
However, when the kids are along for the ride constant chants of ‘Are we there yet?’ and scrabbles amongst siblings can put somewhat of a dampener on what is supposed to be a carefree road trip.
To help ensure the upbeat holiday mood doesn’t disappear the moment the kids are strapped into the back seat, here are a few ways that parents can prevent their little ones driving them crazy as they put rubber to the road.
Set your expectations from the outset
For in-car behaviour that even Supernanny would be proud of its important to set out clear expectations for your trip well ahead of time. Children are adept at following rules in their school environment and at home, and there’s no reason why this can’t be transferred to the interior of your car.
Safety is paramount on a car journey, so it’s important to remind your children that they can’t wriggle out of their seatbelts or car seats under any circumstances.
Using an ‘indoor voice’ and making the front of the car a no go area, are some of the other rules parents may want to put in place to ensure they are able to keep their focus on the road.
Plan activities in advances
The best antidote to boredom is to filling up children’s every waking minute with activities, so that they don’t have an opportunity to get restless and cranky. Get each child to fill a small backpack with their favourite items from colouring books to handheld consoles, to ensure they stay busy.
Having a selection of talking books that you can put on at various parts of your journey, will also help to keep children engaged for an hour or two.
A good, old fashioned game of ‘Eye Spy’ always goes down with children, and as an added bonus children will get to know the area they are passing through.
Break up your journey into smaller chunks
Distances are a bit of an alien concept to most children, so telling them that your journey is only 30 miles in total may do little to appease them.
Try breaking up your journey into smaller chunks, to give your children the chance to get out and stretch their legs at a rest stop, head off for a toilet break, or simply refuel with a bite to eat. This should help to make the journey more manageable for them.
If you are hiring a car as part of your family road trip, taking out affordable car hire insurance will also help to ensure that your journey goes off without a hitch – that’s once you’ve got the kids in line that is!