Ralph Waldo Emerson once said that life is journey, not a destination. Family road trips embrace the idea that the adventure to a place is equally or more important than arrival. Many factors go into a successful road trip: the comfort of the vehicle and clothes you wear, snack and beverage selections, and the activities planned for travel.
Start by choosing a road trip your family will love. Once you’ve made your plans, pack your bags with these road trip essentials.
Rent a Comfortable Ride
A comfortable ride can make or break your travel experience. Why rent? Road trips speed up wear-and-tear on vehicles and add quite a few miles. Rentals can be roughly $25 per day, which is affordable and worth avoiding damage to tires and clogged vehicle air-filters. A few suggestions from dealerships in Dallas: The Toyota Highlander is great for traveling rugged terrain. The Honda Pilot is known for its easy maneuverability, above-average fuel economy and interior comfort.
For the driver, add padding for your tush to make your experience pleasurable. Perhaps a small pillow or rolled up towel stuffed behind the lower back to avoid possible future aches. Also, dress in comfortable clothing. Wearing a pair of tight-wasted pants when in a vehicle can put anyone in a grumpy mood. This includes the rest of the family. Have the kids put on fun clothes and tennis shoes for frequent roadside attraction stops and restroom breaks.
Provide pillows and microfiber blankets for the sleepy eyes of your crew. Remember to keep seatbelts buckled, though, if someone decides to take a nap.
Snacks and Food
Every road trip needs munchies. Cut costs on your trip by packing your own goodies. Replace fatty chips and messy Cheetos with healthier alternatives like: whole-grain cereal cups, energy bars, beef jerky, yogurt, vegetable juice, trail mix, baby carrots, fruit cups, bananas and string cheese, suggests Cooking Light. Companies like Contigo have stainless steel travel mugs that are perfect for transporting tea, coffee and other hot liquids.
Books, iPads, smartphones and movies can only entertain temporarily. Travel journals are great for girls. Supply pens, pencils, markers, stickers — maybe even a small camera — in a canvas tote or purse and ask your little journalist to draw or write about their adventures on the vacation.
Music. It’s hard to get a car full of people to agree on one song. Fortunately, there are hundreds of thousands of songs available on satellite radio. Take turns choosing a station to expand every family member’s music repertoire. You can also turn to music apps like Spotify, Pandora and Google Play to create radio stations based on a certain band or music genre.
Stay Healthy and Beautiful
For minor bumps and cuts along the way, prepare a first aid kit. Create a functional DIY first aid kit that includes: Airbourne, Dramamine, Tums, ibuprofen, band-aids, gauze, disinfectant, burn cream, aloe, sanitizing wipes, lotion and other necessities that keep the family clean, fresh and happy.