Are we there yet? Top driving tips for parents with restless kids

How to make long-distance driving, with kids in the back, more bearable

03 April 2018 - 15:13
Image: Supplied

“I need the bathroom!” “I’m bored!” “Are we there yet?” Any of these complaints sound familiar?

Every parent knows how restless children can get after being in a car for longer than 30 minutes, so here are some tips on how to keep your mini-mes calm and happy on the open road.

Keep them occupied

Kids are generally stimulated by colours and visuals, so make sure you keep them occupied with colouring books or ones filled with interesting pictures. Or, let them watch their favourite movie or TV show on your smartphone or tablet.

Pack padkos

Children have “interesting” appetites and although they may not be hungry, they almost never say no to a treat. You know the drill; it often goes like this: “Mommy, I’m starving, but I don’t want a sandwich – I want chocolate.” It’s not always easy to find a nearby store or garage to buy food en route, so make sure you pack enough food and snacks.

Or, try playing the “silence game” with them: the child who keeps quiet the longest will get their favourite treat. Now, how irresistible is that offer?

Sing along

Although you love singing along to your favourite Greatest Hits album, if you’re driving with toddlers they definitely don’t know the words to hit songs from the Eighties. Play the Frozen or Lion King soundtrack or sing along with them to “Old McDonald Had a Farm” and other nursery rhymes. The idea is to get the whole family involved, which will make for a much happier trip for all.

Check if there are fun activities en route

Before your trip, check if there are any interesting museums, restaurants with play areas, waterfronts or beaches you can visit as part of the journey. If you plan to make regular bathroom stops, why not extend it by an hour or so to see fun places? It’s also a great way to take a break from the car and spend quality time with your family.

You can’t plan a long-distance trip without having car insurance. If you’re still on the fence about what kind of policy to apply for, get an online insurance quote today.

This article was paid for by MiWay.