Guest post by Tiecen Anderson
Does the thought of a drive across the country bore you even before you have started? Are you moving your family or just going on a vacation? Here are some ideas on how to keep your family occupied during a long drive across the country.
Make a Vacation Out of Your Drive
If your time frame is a little more flexible, make a vacation out of your drive. After you have figured out your route, see what’s nearby or directly on the route that may be of interest. Stop at tourist sites or national monuments if you pass them. This will be especially helpful if you are traveling in more than one car or have only two drivers. This will help break up time for drives and give everyone a chance to get out of the car, stretch out, and see some sites you haven’t visited. Seeing the sites is also a great way to break up the day if traveling with children.
Games and Other Entertainment
Planned entertainment will be particularly helpful if children are in your party. Here are some ideas to get you thinking about activities to entertain your family members along the way:
Think of things that your kids might see on the move like different farm animals if you are traveling through the Midwest or tall buildings if traveling through busy cities. Use these things to create bingo sheets ahead of time. This will keep them distracted on the trip and help pass time as they are trying to find the different items.
The License Plate Game
See how many different states you can see license plates from on your move. Keep track and give the kids points for each license from a new state they spot.
Electronic versions of books are a great way to pass the time. If you have a smartphone or tablet there are many apps you can use to download an electronic book. Libraries also have electronic books available to lend. Check out your local library for borrowing options that you can use on your move. This is great for either reading or listening personally, or listening as a whole car.
Since you are moving, most of your belongings will be packed away and you won’t be able to access them until you are in your new home. Before the move, allow each kid to pack their own special bag of things they will want in the car. If space is limited give them a specific number of things they can bring. This could be anything from their favorite toy to their favorite book. Encourage kids to bring at least one or two educational materials like a book or flashcards.
Reward your kids for good behavior or other activities. Give them points for their actions. Kids can exchange their points they have earned for special treats or toys that you have purchased specifically for the trip. Have a “store” (a basket or bucket filled with the pre purchased reward items) in your car that they can buy things from at certain points in the day.
In planning your trip, keep in mind who’ll be with you, how far you have to travel, and how long you have to complete the drive. These tips are just a start. Sit down with your kids before you leave and find out what they might enjoy on the trip. With a little bit of planning ahead, you can make the experience a memorable one for you and your little ones.
In her former life, Tiecen worked in sales and marketing for a large insurance company. Before starting a family, she decided to switch gears and pursue a career that would give her a little more time at home. She finished up her degree from California Sate University in 2008 and started picking up work as a corporate web content writer. She enjoys learning new things every day as she works with a wide variety of clients, like Two Man Movers.