Road trips with your family are a great opportunity to bond and make memories on the way to a getaway.
They can also be stressful, heavy on the wallet, and potentially dangerous.
But you’re a great parent, so you want to ensure safe travels on your road trip.
I’ve put together 5 essential tips to ease your mind and enjoy your next big road trip with your loved ones.
1. Stock Your Emergency Road Kit
If you don’t have a basic emergency road kit, you need to get one.
You should have jumper cables, a small battery charger, spare tire, and a small plastic gas can. Make sure you have your bases covered.
You should also consider a small first aid kit with bandages, antiseptic wipes, and aspirin. Being able to treat small cuts or deal with minor aches will keep your moving.
I also consider my travel mug as part of my emergency road kit. One less stop for coffee keeps my trips on schedule.
2. Visit Your Mechanic
Make sure your inspections are up to date to provide safe travels.
You’ll want your mechanic to check tire pressure, brake pads, and all of your fluids before you hit the road. Looking for a mechanic in a strange place can be costly and can disrupt your trip.
If you’re planning far enough ahead and don’t feel confident about your vehicle, this could be the perfect opportunity to lease a new or used car.
Plenty of vehicles made in the last ten years have all the safety options, charging ports, and storage options you need for a road trip. If you’re trying to decide whether to buy new or used, there’s a great breakdown of pros-and-cons here!
3. Start Hands-Free and Stick to It
I recommend keeping maps in your car since you never know when you’ll be in a low service area.
I wouldn’t recommend using them as your main navigation tool, though. Before you leave, set your smartphone or GPS to your destination and leave it alone. You need your hands on the wheel at all times.
If you have voice activation options, set them up in advance of your trip rather than figuring them out on the road. You can keep your music going and skip tracks without looking away from the highway.
4. Need Medication? Bring Extra
If members of your family need medication, pick up your prescriptions in advance.
Get a pill organizer to ensure you have what you need for each day of your trip. If you need to keep medications cool, try a lunchbox with an ice-pack for an efficient solution.
5. Power Up
Does your family use lots of electronic devices on a road trip?
To make sure you can focus on safe travels and keep your eyes on the road, charge your devices the night before.
Depending on the length of your trip, consider portable chargers, extra cables, or even a power strip. The last thing you want to be doing is digging around for a cable when you’re on the highway.
Family road trips are some of the most fun memories I have of my childhood.
They’re also some of the best memories I have with my kids. Planning ahead can ensure that you can keep your mind on your trip and have the best time.