Traveling is fun, but traveling in a car for hours with your entire family isn’t always as enjoyable. If flying is out of the question or too costly, a road trip is the perfect way to save money while on vacation or visiting relatives. However, being cooped up in a car too long can leave you a little stir crazy. Plus, you don’t have access to all the things you may normally need while going throughout your day-to-day life. Take a look a six ways you can survive a family road trip.
1. Pack Snacks and Drinks Ahead of Time
Stopping every time you get hungry or need a refill can make a short trip twice as long. Each time you run through a drive-thru or go into a convenient store adds extra time to your drive. However, make the most of your trip and make sure it doesn’t last any longer than necessary by packing snacks and drinks ahead of time. Invest in a cooler or a snack caddy to make organizing your food easier. Bring enough water, juice, milk, or soda to last through the entire trip. Grab some of your favorite crackers, fruit, or veggies to snack on in between meals. You’ll save yourself time and money along the way.
2. Bring a Comfortable Pillow or Blanket
There’s nothing worse than being cooped up in a car and not being able to get comfortable. If you have to split the travel with another driver, it’s important to feel rested before you take the wheel. However, not being able to sleep or fidgeting with the AC in the car can keep you awake. When you’re in need of some much needed sleep, bring a pillow and blanket with you. You can easily keep warm with the blanket without having to constantly adjust the temperature, and the pillow makes that cold, hard car door a little more bearable.
3. Opt for a Music App or Audio Book
Fighting over the radio is like a road trip tradition. If you’re tired of your family never being able to agree on the music in the car, bring your own. Create your favorite radio and music stations on an app on your phone to have your favorite music always at hand. Or, if music isn’t exactly what you are looking for, an audio book will get you through the entire trip, and you can tune out the yelling and fighting from the back seat.
4. Invest in an Electronic Cigarette
If you’re a smoker, smoking while on a road trip isn’t easy. Many drivers won’t allow smoking in their car, and stopping each time you need a cigarette can make your road trip too lengthy. Investing in an electronic cigarette eliminates your need to stop often or fill your car with smoke. These can be easily packed in a purse or carryon back and don’t involve smoke or leave your clothes smelling like a cigarette. Most drivers don’t mind polite e-cig users using them in the car, and this can eliminate the need for frequent stops.
5. Plan Stops Along the Way
For exceptionally long road trips, you may find yourself needing to spend the night somewhere or stopping for meals along the way. If this is the case, plan your stops ahead of time. Figure out which towns and cities along the way are right for stopping for gas, food, or lodging. Plan ahead hotel rooms or nights you plan to spend on the road. Book the rooms you need in advance to avoid spending more on hotels or resulting in more stops trying to find a room.
6. Easily Access Toiletry Items
The worse part of a road trip is being stuck in the car without access to the things you need during your day-to-day life. From toothpaste and floss to makeup remover and a hairbrush, packing your toiletries away with you luggage means you can’t get to them when you need them. Pack your toiletries with you in the car. Keep them in a carry-on or duffle bag at your feet. Doing so means you can get to your everyday things quickly without having to stop or pull off the road to dig through your packed bags.