Friday, October 19, 2018

Taking A Good Old Fashioned Road Trip


Road trips are an indelible part of America’s culture, with the vast expanses of roads connecting one corner of the country to another. They’re on the rise, too. Today 39% of American vacations are road trips, according to the New York Times. Perhaps associated with young adults taking a wild adventure, they’re also pretty perfect for the family vacation. Preparation is key to make sure everyone is engaged, involved, and having fun. Proper planning, a clear route and activities along the way will make it a fun, memorable trip. With your travel essentials in hand, why not consider taking to the road for your family vacation? It's a wonderful way to spend time together, see new things, and ensure there is a little something for everyone.

Taking A Good Old Fashioned Road Trip

The planning stage
A well planned road trip is a fun one. Your first consideration should be the vehicle – if you have a small car, it might be uncomfortable for the family to be cramped up for long periods. A more spacious vehicle, such as a truck or van, might be a better option. Even though we have an SUV we ended up renting a larger one when we took a road trip this past summer to Georgia and Florida. It made such a difference for comfort. Secondly, think about where you’re taking yourself – is it a mindless trip, down one highway? Or are you off-roading through a national park? Or, like one Australian couple, taking in all 50 states? You need a goal in sight, no matter how ambitious, to keep the trip engaging.
Taking A Good Old Fashioned Road Trip

Having fun in the car
It’s inevitable that there will be long stretches in the car – otherwise it wouldn’t be called a road trip. You should plan activities for these middle stretches to make sure your kids have fun. Screen time is one way, but this can lead to road sickness and you’ll need to think about battery life, too. Consider audiobooks over the car stereo, sing-along, or simple games of i-spy and 20 questions. Have you ever heard of the license plate game? My daughter loves playing the alphabet game where you compete to find letters of the alphabet in order on signs before anyone else. Mix it up – strange ideas won’t seem very strange after a while on the road. Don't forget to pack some fun snacks to munch on as you play. 
Taking A Good Old Fashioned Road Trip

Balancing the activities – and focusing on yourself
If you’re a nature lover, it would be great to purely hike through some areas of natural beauty. Or if you like craft beers, an on-the-road brewery tour. With at least two different personalities in the car, and potentially many more – including sometimes temperamental kids – it’s really important to take a balance of activities. Consider setting up a rotation, where each family member will visit something they really love on each given day, with something everyone can fully enjoy at least every few days. That way you can balance out everyone's interests and they can all have fun!

The road trip is the perfect family vacation, saving you money and generating what is often much-needed quality time. Planning is the most important bit. After that, it’s all about putting energy in, keeping it fresh, and having fun.

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