Packing up your whole family to spend some time on the road sounds like a lot of work. And let’s not kid ourselves: it is. There is so much to think about, pack and prepare. A good time to start thinking about this is about a week before the trip, and you will want to make a list of everything that needs to be done, so that you don’t forget it. In order to help you out, here are the main things you should be taking care of before a family road trip.
Plan the route
There is more than one way to travel on a road trip. For starters, unless you have a destination you need to reach, you need to set a goal. This can be as close or far as you want. But, especially if you are traveling with small kids, you don’t want to be on the road for too long, so choosing a closer destination (no matter how long you’ll be traveling for) means more stops and less time on the road, which your kids will be thankful for. But the destination is the least of your worries on a road trip – it’s the journey. Don’t just take the fastest route, go for a more scenic one, preferably with lots of different things to see and do along the way.
Check your vehicle
You want to make sure that your car is in tip-top shape before you hit the road. In case you don’t have the time to take it to a shop, you can call a mobile mechanic from the Gold Coast to come to your house and check it right there, if you live in the area. If you do not live in Australia, google the nearest mechanic shop and check if they provide such a service, as it can save you a lot of time.
When road tripping, you might not want to spend every night sleeping in the car, and you most definitely don’t want to be driving non-stop. If you are going during spring or summer, when the weather is good, you can bring along a tent and sleeping bags and plan your travels so you reach a camping spot every night. Otherwise, you can book a hotel or hostel accommodation for every night. Make sure that they are a kid-friendly place and that they won’t mind if you come in late, because you never know what can happen on the road. Try to find places that are around areas with something to do, so that you are not just spending the night there, but actually enjoying your time.
Pack the meals
If you don’t plan out the food you are going to bring, you are going to be spending a lot of money in every gas station store, because people eat a lot on the road, often out of boredom. The food you bring should be predominantly low-calorie, because you will probably be snacking on it all the time, and you’re not exactly moving around a lot while you’re in the car. Make sure you have plenty of water with you, along with any special foods that your kids may need. Try to make the food mess-free, because you don’t want to be spending all the time in there catching crumbs. Crunchy fruits and vegetables in bite-size pieces are your best option for the road, especially if you have a cooler to store them in, but make sure you also pack some sandwiches for the actual meals.
Put together your favorite playlist and plan some entertainment on the road. Forget the tablets and phones that your kids can play with, let their imagination run wild, inspired by their surroundings. Sing songs and think of games to play like spotting cars or natural elements. Make sure everyone is comfortable in their seats and that they have proper motion sickness medication, if needed. Don’t forget your map and you are ready for a fun family vacation full of new adventures!