When it comes to travel, the road trip is having a comeback year. Between cheaper gas prices and increased luggage fees, throwing the kids in the car for a quick weekend (or week-long) getaway has never seemed more appealing. Road trip connoisseurs know that while it’s a great way to travel it isn’t as simple as pack-it-in and go. Here are five tips for making sure your March Break road trip doesn’t leave you crying at the side of the road.
- Take your time
The best part of a road trip happens when you’re about an hour into it. You’ve got a plan, everyone is settled into their seat. The radio is playing your favourite tunes. It’s a sweet spot. So why rush it? Pack your schedule with enough time to let you take your time to get to your final destination. Plan some on-route stops that give everyone a chance to stretch their legs. It’s true what they say about the journey being as rewarding as the destination.
2. Don’t over-pack
The temptation to throw everything you own in a bag because you can, is a big one. Stay strong this March Break and resist the urge. The last thing you want is to be in a car so overflowing with stuff that no one is comfortable. Pack light and be strategic. Limit the kids to one toy each in the car for the ride, they can always swap it out at a pit stop and make sure they aren’t toys with sounds that are going to drive you nuts. Also make sure things are well-stowed, loose objects can become hazards if you have to make sudden stops.
- Use your Expedia+ Rewards Benefits
Yes, you’ve probably already thought about where you’ll stay when you get to where you’re going, but what about along the way? Is there a hotel on route that will break up the drive nicely and offer a great pool or playground for the kids to enjoy? Is there a spa that you never seem to get to but pass every year on the route? Take the time to research ahead. If you are an Expedia+ member your extended Hotel Price Guarantee lasts up until the midnight before your stay. Put it together with the Expedia Best Price Guarantee that gives you $50 if you find a cheaper rate online within 24 hours of booking, and you’ve got yourself a deal!
- BYOE – Bring your own Entertainment
It goes without saying that you’ll hit a radio dead zone right when you need music most. Or the water park you promised you would stop in on is closed on the one day you’re driving through. The solution is to make sure you always have a plan B. A deck of cards, an iPod full of family favourites can be sanity savers in a pinch. Another favourite of ours: We make sure to travel with at least one device that can play a DVD. All it takes is a quick pop into a store on route to pick up a $5 classic that can bridge the boredom gap.
5. Make it a habit
Whether it’s backseat bickering, forgotten headphones or a playlist that has that song you don’t want your child singing repeatedly at Grandma’s, the fact is that no trip will be perfect the first time out. Do you know what the best remedy for an imperfect March Break experience is? Doing it again. The more you travel with your kids in the car, the better you’ll get at knowing exactly what you need and what you don’t. Embrace the call of the open road and you’ll all be better for it.
What are your tried and true tips for Road Trips?