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Summer is a time of fun in the sun, right!?

And sometimes, to get to that fun in the sun you may take a road trip.

With your kids.

Preschoolers and toddlers are lovely, delightful little people, but strap them in a car seat for a road trip and you may find yourself wishing you’d just stayed home.

Alas, here is where your bag of tricks comes in!

5 Essentials You Need for a Road Trip with Young Children

Before you depart on your road trip ensure you’re prepared with these essentials for road trip success.


Pack more snacks and drinks than you think you’ll need.

Remember snacks for yourself!

Depending on the specific age of your child ideas include:

-baby puffs

-applesauce/fruit/baby food squeeze pouches

-fruit snacks

-goldfish crackers

-cheese sticks or slices

-small bites of cut up fruit or veggies

-water or milk


Kids love to sing along and listen to “kid songs”. Check out CDs from the library prior to your trip. Or, download songs or apps onto your phone for a dance party in the car.

When you’re in a particularly rough patch pop on a fun song to lift the funk.


Prepare a bag of road trip activities in advance.

These are small items that are only used for the road trip. They are special and new to your kiddos. Or, maybe things that only show up when you’re in the car.

Some things to include are:


-washable crayons/wipe off boards

-reusable sticker books

-magnets in tin cases

-small cars or dolls

Blankies, loveys, pacifiers

This may seem obvious but have ALL of their favorite blankets, loveys, and pacifiers up front in the car rather than packed in the back in the luggage. (I certainly won’t make that mistake again!)

Also, stash some small blankets to cover them up if they fall asleep.


So, as a last resort, you could choose to turn on a show or movie. Perhaps a show or movie is your FIRST resort! No judging here!

Fingers crossed your kids will start watching and then fall asleep. Be prepared with shows or movies downloaded on your device.

A show or movie may be just the trick to defuse any situation of tantrums or boredom.

And, finally…

When all else fails, get out and run around.

Ahead of time, research locations you could stop along the way. This gives everyone a chance to stretch and get some fresh air.

Wishing you a peaceful and even enjoyable road trip!

Fill us in on your top tips and tricks for keeping littles entertained in the car. And, check out our suggestions of diaper bag must-haves!

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