Three Travel Hacks to Keep Kids Busy in the Vehicle

By Jessica Thorne

February 12, 2020

My husband and I love traveling and exploring new places. Before kids, hopping in the car at last minute notice was spontaneous, easy, and always so much fun. There was no time limit for the amount of driving involved or length of stay. Add in kids. Next thought: can we fly instead? Traveling in the car now involves hours and days of planning because all of us mamas know the outcome of an ill-prepared adventure. In order to make your next road trip both successful and enjoyable, read below for a few travel hacks, designed to keep your kids busy in the vehicle.

Three Travel Hacks to Keep Kids Busy in the Vehicle

We all know that despite three hearty meals, our kids are always hungry for snacks. A ride in the car is the perfect opportunity to offer multiple types of snacks. My goal as a registered nurse and a mama is to provide healthy snacks first. Luckily, your kids do not know what snacks you have packed and therefore, you have the advantage with the snack pile. Again, the best way to make snacks easy in the car is to be prepared. Slice apples and place them in small snack bags to be handed easily to your kids. If they love pretzels, fill up reusable cups that can be handed out quickly. Don’t be afraid to buy snacks that they haven’t had before, because one of the best ways to keep your child entertained on a drive is to surprise them. Just be sure to make sure that your snacks are not choking hazards, as you want them to be safe in the vehicle.

Besides snacks, I have found that my toddlers LOVE new books in the car. Anything that has flaps, buttons, or tabs is always exciting and will keep your child entertained for some time. Pack a backpack or bag with 2-3 books, offering new books, books from the library, or books they haven’t read recently. Another awesome idea is to purchase the books with the water pen. Simply fill the little pen with water and your child can “color” with the water pen over and over again on the coloring book. While simple and mess-free, the surprise of new colors and shapes makes time in the car go a bit quicker. When your child is done reading books and you have another adult passenger, remember that the book can actually be read! This will also bide time.

You have offered snacks, books, and yet you still have time in the car! My last favorite travel hack is filling a backpack or bag with toys. Pick their favorite toys and maybe purchase another new toy if that is an option. Limiting the number of toys they have will ensure they actually play with these toys. For example, my 1-year-old son loves to drive cars and trains in the house. For our road trip, I brought him his favorite green car, a blue train he has, and I purchased him a book with a water pen to color. He drove his car on the book, colored his train with the water pen, and then proceeded to want a snack! Isn’t it amazing how quickly our children can entertain themselves? They are so imaginative!

Hopefully, you found a travel hack here to keep your kids busy on your next car ride! Although it can be difficult, our children love new places and adventures just like we do. The opportunity to learn new things in new places does wonder for a child. Good luck!

Do you feel a bit more at ease now after reading Three Travel Hacks to Keep Kids Busy in the Vehicle? If you need help with more information on pregnancy, sleep, or baby reach out to a Mama Coach in your area so they can help!

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