Family Road Trip Advice – How To Prepare For Long Car Journeys With Kids

We’ve always been keen travellers and for the past 20 years we have done a lot of longer length trips to take in as much of the world as possible and we are passionate about showing our children all the world has to offer when we can. You may have not seen our travel update on the blog, but if you’ve been following me over on my Instagram, or even on my YouTube channel, you’ll know that we have been back over to the States to do another road trip with our 2 young son’s up and down the Californian coastline. It was our 5th road trip so we’ve gained quite a lot of experience over the years as to how to survive a road trip with kids and lots of travel hacks to make it all easier for everyone involved so I thought it would be a great idea for a post for my blog.

Family road trip advice tips for flying with kids

This is a collaborative post

Family Road Trip Advice

Snacks – lots of them!!

This helps with boredom too, plus make sure you have lots of spare water in case you get stuck in traffic anywhere, although be careful that you don’t end up with full bladders that you need to stop for too often!


When we took our then 10-month-old to North America for his first road trip we were able to time our long journeys with his nap schedule which really helped as he would be asleep for most of the long drives. If your children are older and no longer nap you may find they have a longer attention span and can be amused with activities in the car, but timing your journeys when your children would normally be tired can really help make the trip a lot easier for all involved.

Road trip travel hacks children in front of 60's diner

Car Insurance

It is SO important to have insurance, and the right insurance for your trip! If you are using public transport such as trains or Greyhound to get you around your multi centre destination trip but you might need to organise a short-term solution for the odd day of car hire throughout the trip, there are huge benefits of one day car insurance which offer a flexible way of insuring a vehicle for the exact amount of time you need it (including hourly!) which start from just £19 per day or £58 per week.


Time flies a lot faster if you’re entertained. We make up lots of different playlists for our trips but to be honest the boys usually ask for our Disney one most of the time! They love singing along and they just make us feel really happy when we are singing so the time seems to go a lot faster! We use Spotify for our playlists.


We take lots of things for the boys to do whilst in the car, little things like magnetic board games, Top Trumps, crafting things and I even made up some magnetic play tins last time – I used alphabet magnets but you could even make a LEGO activity tin.

Additionally, I also make them activity Bags – I make these for plane and ferry journeys and the boys love getting out something each hour of the trip to entertain them – I get inexpensive things from Home Bargains, you can watch a video here on what I put in ours.

SUV on a road trip

Car mount for phone/tablet

I have a whole list of road trip essentials over on my Amazon store front if you want to see the things we pack for our road trip with kids but I would definitely recommend a headrest phone mount if you can get one. Our children are getting to the age where they want to watch the phone which we don’t usually let them to for long periods, but we make an exception during road trips because we know how boring it can be for them. We use this as the last option once we have done the above activities. (And usually to stop my youngest from an afternoon danger nap!!)

Wet Wipes

I never thought I would see the day, but we don’t actually use wipes anymore!! However, when traveling I always have them handy to wipe fingers, messes and dirt!

Eat a big breakfast!

We usually stay in hotels and motels which offer a generous breakfast so we gather breakfast items to take with us for the times we don’t have breakfast early on to stop hanger or to simply extend the amount of time we can drive for before we need to stop for food. If we have a huge chunk of distance to cover we try to stock up food wise so we don’t have to stop to buy food until tea time. This saves time and money 😊

I have another road trip hacks blog post with loads of other advice for how to save time, money and your sanity on road trips, don’t forget to check it out after you’ve read this post. And for more tips pop over to watch the video I created!

More family road trip videos

Our Californian Road Trip

Our family Travel videos

Packing tips – pack with me


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