What Do You Need for the Perfect Family Road Trip?
Ah, road trips. They’re one of the most fun and exhilarating ways to get your family together and enjoy some quality time. Whether you choose to tour the great National Parks out West, drive down the Mississippi to see what the heartland has to offer, take the Lincoln Highway from coast to coast, or discover oddities and curiosities along Route 66, there are countless ways to enjoy a long drive across these United States. The only question is: what do you bring along the way? In this post, we’ll cover the road trip essentials that you and your family need to ensure that your road trip is fun, safe, and one for the books.
Step One: Get Your Car Ready
Of course, you won’t get very far on your road trip if you don’t have a trusty set of wheels to drive. Now, you could always choose to buy a new Mercedes Benz car for your road trip, but chances are your family ride will do just fine. All you need is a reliable car that is comfortable and can fit your whole family inside. Before you head out, it’s a good idea to take your car into the shop to get it checked out. If you’re due for an oil change, be sure to have that done. Other maintenance items to look out for include:
- Coolant and windshield wiper fluid levels
- Worn brake pads
- Tire tread depth
- Old spark plugs
- Touchy starter
Once you’ve gotten the all-clear from your mechanic, your car should be good to go! Now it’s time to install a car GPS tracker and plan out everything else you’ll need to bring along for a safe and fun trip.
Step Two: Emergency Gear
Hope for the best though we may, accidents and emergencies can still occur. That’s why it’s always good to be prepared before you head out on the road. Before you gas up the family wagon, be sure to include the following items in your packing list:
- First aid kit with bandages and disinfectant
- Light pain killers like ibuprofen or aspirin
- Allergy medications for any severe allergies
- Plenty of fresh water
- Gas can in case you run out on the road
- Spare tire
It’s also a good idea to invest in car insurance like State Farm that offers roadside assistance like towing and tire replacements. The last thing you want is to be stranded on the side of the road with no one to call. Be sure you have a game plan for anything that is likely to go wrong – and, unfortunately, car trouble is one of those things.
Step Three: Make the Car Comfy and Fun
One thing that you can do to make your road trip as fun and relaxing as possible is to make the car a super comfy relaxation spot and zany game zone. Get big fluffy blankets, grab the Tempur-Pedic neck pillows, and pack some stuffed animals for the kids. Once you’re all settled in and comfy, you can think about how you’ll pass the time on the road! One fun way is by playing road trip games. Consider these fun options once you hit the road:
- 99 bottles of beer on the wall: sing the classic shanty and see how long it takes you to finish!
- Road bingo: make a list of items like cows, barns, and those weird metal dinosaur statues, and play bingo with them!
- I spy: this game is a classic, but probably works best when traffic slows down and you’re stuck in bumper-to-bumper.
- Crossword puzzles: you just can’t go wrong with this all-American classic time-killer. If you are trying to expand your children’s brains but crosswords are a bit too sophisticated, get creative! Making it fun should be the game, and slowly expanding their vocabulary and playing word jumble games or anagrams can make it fun, competitive, and will stretch their brain! You could be a referee, and use a tool like wordunscrambler.net to help move proceedings along!
Road trips are a great time to have some lighthearted fun with the whole family, so take the time to enjoy the merriment!
Step Four: Family Bonding
Road trips are the ideal time to bond as a family and learn more about each other. Once everyone has grown tired of the games, take the time to introspect and discuss the things that matter most to you and your family. Listen to each other’s hopes and fears. Dialogue about past pains, heartbreaks, and misdeeds. Cry, laugh, and forgive each other for everything you’ve held inside all these years. Truly, road trips are the time for the kind of family connection that often is impossible during the busy workweek and friend-filled weekend.
Those are our steps for putting together the ultimate family road trip! Have any suggestions? Let us know in the replies below!