Tips to Survive those Summer Road Trips

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Now that school is out, your family probably has some summer road trips on the calendar. While hours in the car can be a great time to bond, it can also try everyone’s patience. Here are some survival tips from fellow moms and road-trip experts:

Tech entertainment
It’s hard to escape technology these days, even in the car. In these instances, technology can be your friend. A college friend Beth said she survived the trip to the Grand Canyon by making sure parent-approved apps and games were already downloaded. She even let her kids text each other while they sat in the backseat.

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Another college friend Maggie made five round-trip drives from Seattle to Bellingham by letting her older children be in charge of informing her of any Waze updates.

If reading makes your kids car sick, opt for audiobooks! Jody says her kids adore listening to classics like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. After a three-hour car ride, her son Orson said, “What? We’re here — we’ve only been in the car for 20 minutes!”

Time for a screen-time break? Break out these cute, pocket-size Ozobots download(starting at $54). Kids simply draw color commands (with markers that accompany the toy) and the Ozobot responds with actions such as spins, dance moves, zigzags and more. Even cooler: there are Ozobot Bit Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man and Marvel versions!

 

Non-tech entertainment

Music always helps a trip go faster, adds Jody. Before they leave, they create playlists with kid-friendly songs from Sounds of Music, Moana, and Snatam Kaur to keep everyone happy.

51SOMKdE2dL._AC_US218_Before adults rediscovered coloring books, they’ve always been popular with kids. With the renewed interest, we’ve found books that are a better fit for our tween.

Our kids were captivated for nearly an hour working on Paint by Sticker books by Workman Publishing ($9.95). The designs were complicated enough to keep them busy and they adored the results – colorful images of animals that were worthy of hanging up on a wall.

 

Survival 101

Pack snacks, recommends Denae. As soon as we get in a car, our youngest says he’s starving and needs to eat something right now. Even if he just had breakfast or lunch. So now whenever we travel somewhere, even if it’s for less than hour, we bring car-friendly snacks.

Keep AAA on your mobile contact list. One summer, we suddenly got a flat traveling on the LIRR to see my in-laws. While my daughter and I grabbed a cab for the rest of the trip, the hubby waited to be rescued by AAA.

Try to time your departure time, says Scott Chesrown, a car expert at Vroom, the national online car retailer changing the way people shop for cars by bringing the entire car-buying process online. Always check Google Maps or Waze to find out how long the trip will take before leaving.

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