Family Road Trip Tips

So many people hit the road during the summer months. Some people love the open road while others want to save some dollars and avoid air travel. Whatever the reason,

Map It Out

Your route (obviously!) but also how you plan to pack the car. If you are making multiple stops along the way, you’ll want to pack accordingly. Making an overnight stop? Then make sure to pack a small bag with those overnight necessities for everyone. That way, the whole car doesn’t have to be unloaded (and reloaded) after that stay. Similarly, if you’ll need to reach certain things from the trunk / back, pack those together and make sure to leave that bag in an easy-to-reach spot. Do not put the snacks or diaper bag in first, put those at the top!


When planning for one of these long legs, accessibility is key. The kids need to be able to self-serve as much as possible. No one needs a shoulder injury from reaching to the back seat for the thousandth time!

Think about the backseat and what might work well for accessibility and containment. In our car, we have captains chairs, and a simple bin between the seats works great. Seat organizers work well for some families too.

Time (and Chaos) Management

  • Get a Time Timer. These are amazing around the house, but also on car trips when kids can’t tell time. A great visual of how long until the next stop / treat / movie etc.
  • Use a pill organizer to store small treats. Then, at regular intervals, let the kids open a compartment. Surprise! It’s fruit snacks / marshmallows / m&ms / craisins / chocolate chips (and the like).
  • For slightly older kids, help them choose snacks for the day (individual servings) and put them in charge of them. No more asking for snacks, its literally in their hands instead. Corral them in zippered pouches for ease.


In our car, most rules go out the window when it comes to extended time (i.e. 6+hrs) in the car, a little creativity and surprises go a long way. Here are some ideas for families with young kids.

  • Surprises! If you have new, small toys or car games, don’t hand them all out at the start. Instead set a location / goal / time mark to “surprise” them with the items. Think ahead to the destination, so 2 hours in… surprise! Everyone gets new sunglasses!
  • WikkiStix
  • Mad Libs or Would You Rather
  • Restickable Stickers
  • Fidgets
  • Activity books like hidden pictures
  • Of course, iPads, audiobooks and games

Patience… and your favorite treat once you get to your destination!

Let’s work together to all get more done. Contact us for home organizing help if you’d like a partner to get you going in your kitchen.

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