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How to survive a car journey with kids

How to survive a car journey with kids


We’ve picked out the best ways to keep little, and not so little, ones happy when out on the open road

Summer is truly here, and that means many of us are heading off across the country or maybe even to another country to enjoy some much deserved R&R.

Whilst getting away is great, the long car journeys are, at best, tedious and at worst, a nightmare, especially if kids are along for the ride.

Though the scenery whizzing by may be impressive, a kid’s enthusiasm for the journey can quickly go downhill without anything to keep them entertained. We’ve picked out the best ways to have peace and harmony in your car when you’re on a long journey.

Let’s play a game!

There is, after all, nothing better than a classic in-car game. A round of I-Spy, spot-the-yellow-car, first to count 10 Minis etc, can cause the miles to go past pretty quickly, all the while keeping kids engaged and entertained.

Car journeys get a game going

A variety of traditional board games are available in smaller, travel-friendly versions too. These could be a good option for when the imagination and observation-based games have run their course.

I’ll name that tune

There’s a good chance that you won’t fancy playing nursery rhymes on repeat for hundreds of miles, but there’s a way of incorporating that music into a game.

Car game guess the song

Select a song you know the children know, and play just a small, half a second snippet of it. Going off this time, they then have to guess the track. Though simple, it’s likely to keep them entertained for quite some time.

Quick stop pit-stop

Though you may want to get to your destination as quickly as possible, a pause for some fresh air and a quick run around can do wonders. Even if it just means parking up for ten minutes, a break in the journey can quickly calm children down.

Long car journey pit stop

Adding in a stop may put more time on the overall length of the journey, but it opens up possibilities to see some new places along the way.

Set up an in-car DVD player

Yes, it may not be the most imaginative solution, but sometimes technology works. An in-car DVD player can quickly keep tantrums at bay and they don’t have to cost the earth, either. Most can be mounted to the back of the front seat headrests, meaning that there shouldn’t be too many cables trailing around the cabin.

In car DVD player

It’s always better to go for a good quality version, as it’ll pay dividends to have a solid, reliable source of entertainment at all times.

If all else fails…

The high-tech option

It might be one of the easier options, but you can’t fault the way tablets keep children entertained. However, it does bring in a whole series of other problems. You have, for one, got to make sure that any devices are charged before you drive off.

High tech ipads and tablets

In addition, it’s best to download anything the night before the trip. You can guarantee that on the morning of the journey, the internet will slow and you’ll be unable to download anything at all.

And the great thing about this option is that it suits little kids, pre-teens and teens alike. It may be something we frown on around the dinner table, but this is one time when kids’ obsession with tablets and smartphones is actually a help!