The family road trip can often be a time of joy and stress in equal measure. However, taking your family on an incredible adventure in your rented RV doesn’t necessarily mean that your journey will be punctuated with arguments and awkward silences, regardless of whether it’s inclusive of young children or teens (or even both!). Luckily, we offer you 3 important tips that will help ensure that your family road trip is memorable for all the right reasons!
1) Avoid overly ambitious itineraries
It’s incredibly easy to get carried away with your road trip itinerary and many overzealous parents will often cram in far too much in too short a timeframe. Overly ambitious itineraries will make your vacation feel like an endless stream of tiring activities and yawn-inducing commitments both to kids and teenagers alike. Simplicity can often be the key to a well-managed road trip and this doesn’t mean compromising on visiting an exciting and eclectic combination of stops. Remember also that many kids and teenagers will see road time as downtime, where they can listen to music, read, play handheld computer games or even sleep – breaking these activities up too regularly will only serve to frustrate and induce grumpiness! Try to find a balance between the road and stops, and remember that you can always return once again if you don’t have time to visit every attraction on your route!
2) Give the kids some control!
A common mistake many road trip planners make is to overlook the input of children or teenagers in the itinerary development stage. And yes, this includes choosing which RV rental you would go with. After all, they would be in the same vehicle throughout the trip. The point is, by engaging your children or teens in the planning phase you’ll often increase their interest levels considerably, especially if you let them choose a few stops that excite them too (even if you don’t particularly want to go to another toy museum or a UFO-themed diner!). All good family road trips should include an element of compromise so that all participants attain experiences that meet their needs and interests. An added bonus is that the trip will expose you to a wider and more eclectic range of experiences that will not only facilitate enthusiasm but happier (and possibly quieter) passengers too. Ask them to plan and invest in their own vacations rather than dictate the entire road trip!
3) Road trip supplies
Without doubt, a crucial step to managing a successful family road trip is packing a healthy amount of supplies that will get you through the dullest stretches of highway and the inevitable traffic jams you’ll hit. Supplies don’t just relate to food and drink of course – they should also include entertainment items such as books, magazines, music devices, and handheld computer games, as well as useful comfort items such as pillows, blankets, wet wipes and even garbage bags to ensure that used and messy items can be stored away quickly. However, it goes without saying that food and drink supplies are imperative if you want to keep kids and teenagers in a positive mood for the longer stretches. Food supplies should include a combination of healthy options (particularly fruit and sandwiches) and non-messy snacks. You should avoid packing too many energy-rich treats like candy or foods that lead to sticky or greasy fingers, and fluids should be largely restricted to water or fruit juices, although low-sugar sodas are fine in moderation. If you find it difficult to remember things, many travel websites and blogs now include road trip supply checklists to help you on your way!