Aside from packing lots of snacks, water and extra clothes just in case; I find the following ideas really help us when road tripping with young kids.
1) Window clings- easy, mess free fun. Grab a couple different packets from the dollar store and your children will have tons of fun creating different scenes.
2) Glow Sticks- These provide endless entertainment especially if travelling at night.
3) Bubble Guns- who doesn’t love bubbles? They will have a lot of fun watching the bubbles blow through the window. If travelling at night, be sure to get the glow in the dark bubbles.
4) I Spy Game- encourage I spy games and collect some empty paper towel or toilet paper rolls and some stickers for the kids to make their very own binoculars.
5) Magnetic travel games work great for older kids, as do games like travel boggle.
6) Books- once children do not suffer from motion sickness, they can get some reading time in.
7) Coloring- pick up a new coloring book and some crayons along with a clip board, which can also be found at the dollar store.
8) Mental Games- I love coming up with random road trip games. Some are:
– name a boy/girl beginning with “x” letter
– name a fruit that begins with “x” letter, has “x” color and “x” size
– name a country with “x” letter in “x” continent
– quiz them on math facts.
– I give random abbreviations and they have to come up with what it could mean, for example “L.L.M” “Long Legged Man”. It doesn’t have to make any sort of perfect sense but it does encourage quick thinking and makes for good laughs.
9) Timing- start your trip as early in the morning as possible, before the sun comes up and stop to feed younger kids before they get to the point where they are irritable and fussy and also have everyone use the bathroom before they absolutely “have to go”. This helps to keep everyone happy.
10) Disposable Camera- Purchase a cheap, disposable camera for each child and allow them to take their own pictures. This way they can document their own trip….And they capture the things we overlook and sometimes miss.