My Best Tips for Traveling with Teens
Now that my kids are a older, our road trip strategy has changed. No longer are my kids confined in car seats and drinking out of sippy cups. Now, they’re more concerned with wifi coverage and comfort than anything else.
- Pack the wifi. When we’re at home, we wouldn’t necessarily encourage the kids to spend hours on end on their devices, but when devices mean the difference between whining and arguing or peace and quiet, then I’m all for the technology. This year, we’ll be traveling with a wifi hotspot so that everyone can connect when needed and we don’t have to worry about going over on our phone plan.
- Pack for comfort. Pillows and blankets may take up a little bit of extra space in the car, but they sure do make the ride more comfortable!
- Listen Together. Pick an audio book that the whole family will enjoy and listen to the audio together. When you take breaks from listening, you’ll have some fun discussion opportunities.
- Be smart about road trip food. We used to pack a cooler full of food for our long road trips, but we found that no one wanted to eat a day old PB&J sandwich. But we also don’t want to spend a fortune stopping at fast food restaurants. Now, we stop at grocery stores and buy a loaf of bread and sandwich fixings (or whatever we’re in the mood for) and stop at a local park to eat. We have made some amazing memories doing that!
- Pack some games and books. Yes, I love technology for keeping everyone quiet, but I also love having a few activities and road trip games that we can do together. Several of us like to crochet in the car, and everyone loves to read on road trips.
- Don’t skimp on the pit stops. There’s value in getting to your destination quickly, but we’ve found that taking time to get out of the car and stretch our legs at regular intervals makes a huge difference in how we feel. So we do. It might take us a little longer to get where we’re going, but we’re happier when we get there. And that’s worth it to us.
- Check the car before you go. No one wants to spend part of the road trip stuck on the side of the road or at a far-away auto shop waiting for the car to be fixed. Yes, things happen on the road, but we want to be as prepared as possible before we set off.
What are some of your road trip tips?
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Sarah L says
Last entries. Thanks so much for the contest.
Cassandra Eastman says
My tip is to bring a basket of food and drinks for the kids, and a basket of toys and coloring books! Games like i-spy are fun as well.
Lisa L says
My kids have toys that they can only play with in the car. It’s the only way they’re able to sit in the car quietly.
Donna K says
Remember to bring snacks
Carolyn Daley says
My first tip is to have a few power bank chargers on hand. You may not always have access to an outlet to charger your devices so a portable power bank is nice to have, especially if your phone is about to die. My second tip is a package of scented trash bags so you can keep your car clean and easily throw out all garbage at a rest stop.
Janice Cooper says
We like to have good music, tons of snacks and juices and a mobile device to watch a movie or play games such as a tablet to make our road trips fun!
Susan Smith says
We stop often at rest stops so the children can get out and stretch their legs.
Karla R. says
My tip would be to have snacks and games ready for the kids because they get bored easily on road trips!
I hate to say it, but electronics are probably the best ‘teen-sitters’ available, so make certain they have them for the trip!
laurie murley says
my best road trip tip is I always pack snacks and drinks in the car so we don’t have to stop so much
Crystal F says
My only tip is to have lots of entertainment. If they have something to do it keeps them from asking so many questions and makes the time go by quicker. Thank you!
Lisa Brown says
lisa brown commented on post https://foodfunfamily.com/2015/12/pecan-pie-thumbprint-cookies.html
Betty C says
Allow extra time for frequent stops and who knows when you may find an interesting side trip.
Sarah L says
(but where’s the GARLIC???)
Terry Cross says
Plan to make frequent stops
When traveling, use a plastic cereal container with a lid for all of the garbage in the car. This works great for all of the snacks, napkins, etc.
Laurie Emerson says
My best road trip tip is to make sure to take plenty of stops along the way. Just getting out of the car for a little while makes the trip so much nicer.
Amy Z. says
My tips is to plan some fun stops along the way!
Trisha McKee says
Pack well: snacks, GPS, plans – know where everything is and designate a person as leader over finding anything needed. Oh, and lots of water.
PACK SNACKS AND DRINKS FOR EVERYONE. ENTERTAINMENT FOR THE KIDS IS A MUST AS WELL, SUCH AS A TABLET OR BOOK :)
Ashley C says
Pack a variety of new activities for the car! If you have a portable gaming device, let the kids get a new game, get new coloring or activity books, new road trip specific games, a new movie. Anything NEW will keep them occupied longer
susan smoaks says
my tip is to stop at a park and run around for a while to let out our energy.
Stephanie Larison says
My mom hack is having a bag of snacks in the glove compartment for when they start getting whiney and we can’t stop.
Daniel M says
always take snacks and drinks on a road trip
Sarah L says
Ellie Wright says
Bring snacks and activities for the kids.
My tipi is to have individually packed snacks.
Sarah L says
lorencia mccullum says
snacks, coloring books, crayon, books, favorite toys, portable dvd player and babywipes a must..
Sarah L says
Susan Christy says
Sing, play games, and take snacks that don’t leave crumbs – no one wants to clean the car during a road trip!
Michelle C says
I like to drive during the night while the kids are more likely to sleep, when possible.
Sarah L says
Taking enough stretch/potty breaks is a very good thing. You can plan ahead for some stops that have interesting things.
Tina W says
The two weeks before our junior year in college my roommate and I traveled up and down the state of California visiting friends and family. No plans, no notice to anyone, we’d just show up.
We were kind of idiots, but it sure was fun!
Sarah L says
I always have to have pillows & blankets when I travel.
James Robert says
Having 5 kids I have learned to bring activities or movies to keep them busy and plenty of snacks and drinks.
Sarah L says
Let everyone have a say on where you’re going and what stops you might make.
Thanks for the contest.
it seems like everything is covered, so my tip is to be patient and don’t argue!
Travel with little ones during their normal nap time so the time in the car will go faster
Be prepared by using checklists.
Jim S. says
Be sure to stop at the gas station and get 32oz soft drinks for everybody. Make it a game to see who can hold it the longest. Lol
Amy C. says
Bring lots of fun activities for your kids to do to keep them happy, Also, pack your own snacks. It’s healthier and saves you lots of money.
Marissa M says
Always pack a snack
My tip is to pack snacks and bottles of water. Having to buy water at stop along the way is very expensive.
June S. says
My best road trips have just been driving to go and visit my bother or my grandson. Not way too long of trips is the best.
Wanda Patterson says
If at all possible take a friend or other family member that you know travels well (no car sickness) Kids get board and a friend helps. Keep a pillow for them its hard to sleep with your neck all twisted they can lean on it. Snacks anything not sticky that can be easily swept up and out.
Tabathia B says
Bring things for the kids to do, snacks, cooler and wipes
Mary Cloud says
For someone who always had car sick kids be sure to bring buckets, towels and wet washrags – you never know what mess you’re going to have to clean up.
My best tip is to be sure to schedule time for unexpected stops, because you never know what wonderful place you may spot along the way.
when we went to Missouri to visit my brother in law
Leigh Anne Borders says
We like to have thigns ready by packing snacks, water, change of clothes, and our first aid kit. I never know what I might need with the kids in the car. We even have shoes! I can;t even begin to tell you how many times we have left home without shoes!
Dan D says
Patience. Those road trips can be very long.
Kimberly Hilbert says
I have a tote bag in the car with everything we might need. Plastic utensils, plastic cups, a roll of paper towels and a sample size towelettes. We don’t always like to go out to eat but sometimes we get thirsty or want a snack. We pick something up at Target and it doesn’t have to be the small 1 serving drink, we’ll get the big one and share.
Paol Trenny says
I make sure everyone has everything they need to make themselves comfortable. Lots of toys, magazines, and food/drinks.
Jessica To says
I make sure I have snacks for everybody. We get cranky if we’re hungry!
Gina M says
My best tip is to wear comfortable clothes! No one wants to be stuck in the car for a long period of time while uncomfortable.
Thanks for the chance to win!
wildorchid985 AT gmail DOT com
We love travel Bingo on road trips!
Julie Lundstrom says
I like their ranch veggie dip.
Amanda Alvarado says
My best tip is to pack plenty of snacks and drinks and lots of activities/books for the kids to do while in the car!
Bridgett Wilbur says
Make sure you have a gps, and a spare tire with lots of gas.
Will G says
Make sure you have a GPS.
Allison Swain says
My tip is to bring plenty of snacks, games, and movies.
thank you for the chance to win this
Trisha Burgess says
My my tip for car trips is play the eye spy game! It keeps everyone engaged on trip, you’ll see things you wouldn’t otherwise see and if your kid is car sick it helps because they focus outside the car rather than the motion of the car!
amy tolley says
we bring dvds and lots of road games such as count how many 18 wheeler’ s you see or count the blue cars only etc we have loads of fun on road trips
Devon F says
pack lots of snacks & patience!
jeanette sheets says
GOING ON ROAD TRIP WITH MY SISTER AND BEST FRIEND WE HAD A BALL
Take plenty of non-messy snacks with you and make regular stops for bathroom breaks.
Steven weber says
My best road trip tip is to make sure you have lots of good music to keep you going.
Seyma Shabbir says
Always pack a change of clothes! Carry it with you everywhere LOL
Tammy Shelton says
Couldn’t go on a road trip without our iPads.
Bring lot’s of snacks.
Cynthia C says
My kids liked to watch the progress of the trip on a map (back in the days when there were still paper maps!)
Karla R. says
Our best road trip was last winter when we were told a city near us had snow so we drove the family up to spend the day in snow.
My best road trip tip is to bring plenty of books, snacks, and water.
Sandy Weinstein says
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Sandy Weinstein says
take a cooler for drinks, and healthy snacks, so you wont have to stop for junk food. make sure everyone has enough room and their own space. take an emergency kit, make sure the spare tire is good, have a cell phone charger or battery pack.
Margaret Smith says
Our best road trip was a trip that we took from NJ to SC. We took our time with the trip and made a number of stops. It was fun and relaxing.
shelly peterson says
I don’t road trip much but I do know to pack lots of drinks and snacks.
Bring some fresh fruit along.
Andrina Goetz says
I bring a CD with Nursery Rhymes on it. It make the time go by fast and it is fun.
Sarah Hayes says
take plenty of snacks and things to keep the kids busy
Heidi B says
Extra snacks, batteries, charging cable, pillow and a roll of “just in case” toilet paper and we’re good.
Amanda Sakovitz says
bring lots of snacks
Kris Otto says
We took my son and his friend on a 10 day road trip on California 1; it was awesome!
Always pack snacks and games for road trips.
Thomas Murphy says
Bring lots of snacks.
My tip is to plan for messes because there WILL be messes.
Janet W. says
My best road trip tip is to use a grocery bag as a trash bag! That will help keep down the clutter and trash while on a road trip when every one is eating snacks, etc.
Niki Johnson says
Travel with plenty of items (snacks and toys) to occupy the family for a long period of time.
Michelle J. says
We like to bring the iPad!
Card games, coloring books for younger kids. Older kids and read fun books, magazines, or help with travel guides.
Kelly D says
My tip is to bring a cooler with drinks and snacks. It’s also useful for items you buy on the trip.
Sandy Klocinski says
Add 2 hours cushion on your travel time. Even if you already plan a stop or plan to drive for certain hours, sometimes unexpected things can happen.
Cynthia R says
My best road trip tip is make sure your AAA membership is current.
Dawn Monroe says
My tip is electronics are teens best friend and don’t forget the chargers/batteries.
Bring plenty of snacks and drinks.
Julie Wood says
My best road tip is to make sure to have plenty of games and healthy snacks for the kids when traveling so no one gets bored!
Lisa Brown says
I just make sure there are games or things to occupy the kids, and have water, juice and snacks at the ready.