Taking a road trip with the family is a classic summer activity. It’s vital, though, that you take the right precautions before you hit the road. Let’s take a look at the steps you should take before you go on a road trip so that your family can have a fun, safe vacation.
The Right Car Seat
It’s critical that your kids have the right car seat before you head out for any trip in the car. This is especially true of long trips. When you’re traveling by highway, you’re likely to be going at faster speeds over longer distances. Unfortunately, that means the odds of getting into a serious accident are higher.
As such, make sure you’ve got the right car seat for your kids. If you’re not sure what kind of car seat your children need, you can check that online with the NHTSA’s website. Officially recognized car seats are listed in detail on their site, which can help you decide on the right seat for your car.
Make sure you’ve got all the things the kids are going to need already packed up before you hit the road. If it’s going to be a long trip, bring entertainment of some kind. Your car might have a screen for showing movies, which could be a great way to keep the little ones entertained over a long journey. Another option is handheld video games. A kid with Pokemon running on their Switch is usually a pretty happy kid.
Likewise, pack snacks and drinks for the journey. Kids will get cranky, especially on long, boring trips on the highway. Ideally, you’ll want to have another adult with you to help hand out the snacks and keep an eye on the little ones during the trip. If you’re the only adult on the road trip, though, that’s okay; just wait until you pull over at a rest stop for snack time.
Driving a big group on a long trip is tiring. Make sure you’re taking plenty of breaks at rest stops! There’s little quite as dangerous as driving on the highway while tired and distracted by kids who are upset because they’ve been in the car seat for too long!
Plan to take fifteen-minute breaks every two hours at minimum. Stretch your legs, use the facilities, and make sure everybody–yes, even you–is staying hydrated. Your trip might last a little longer with these frequent breaks, but you’re much more likely to arrive well-rested at your destination.