Keeping Children Entertained on a Driving Holiday

For families, driving holidays are one of the best ways you can explore other countries without the expense that you will experience from other modes of transport. In addition, driving can give you the freedom to go wherever, whenever and this means that it is an option worth considering. However, if you’re taking children, the fact that driving will most likely increase the travelling time is something that it is vital to consider. As you’re more than likely aware, there is nothing worse than a bored child in a car journey, and this means that it is very important that you are prepared.

Comfort is a Priority

If you’re going to be sitting in one place for a long time, then it is important that you are as comfortable as possible. It can spoil what would otherwise have been a great journey if you’re not travelling in comfort, so you should consider the following items:

Several layers of clothing – if you’re too cold or hot, clothing is the best way to change your temperature without having to use the air con or heating. If you have more than one child, they may not agree, and plenty of clothing would give them the ability to gain control over this.

–          Sunglasses/Blind – sightseeing can be wonderful. However, it is not quite so scenic if you’re contesting with the sun for the whole journey. Wearing sunglasses would mean that you could look outside without having to squint, and attaching a sunblind to your window would help to protect everyone in the car.

–          Drinks and snacks – lack of food and dehydration can make everybody irritable; particularly, children. It is a good idea to ensure that you have plenty of water to drink, as this is the best way to hydrate your body. It makes sense to take a cool bag so that your drinks would not heat up if they were in a hot car. Keeping Children Entertained on a Driving Holiday

Plan Your Journey

If you’re travelling long distance in a car, you may find that you often have to travel for several hours at a time. In order to make sure that everybody can enjoy the journey, it is vital that you plan your journey to include rest stops.

Before you leave for your holiday, you should take a look at a map of the place to which you are travelling. You should aim to stop at least once an hour, with a proper break of half an hour or more every two hours. For the longer breaks, you should mark service stations on your map, although these will vary in availability depending on the country you are in. For shorter breaks, simply finding somewhere that you can use a toilet is helpful.

Research the Area

When you’re planning the route that you’re going to take, it is important that you get a little information about the things you might be passing on your way. Not only would this be interesting, but it would also mean that you had something to talk about, which might help to take their mind off the travelling.

There is the chance to play games with the information you have learned as well. If you know that there is going to be a church on your journey, then you could challenge the children to try to spot it, with the winner getting a small prize. There are many things that you could ask them to find, and children enjoy games like this, particularly if they are young.

Before you leave home, it may be a good idea to make your children a list of the things that they will be passing on the journey before they reach their destination. You could print out some photos of landmarks for them to spot, and this would help to keep them engaged for the whole journey.

Pack Plenty of Entertainment

This is the most important thing to think about when you’re planning your driving trip, because there will invariably be times when your children are bored and need things to do to pass the time. As a general rule of thumb, it is always a good idea to take too much entertainment than not enough.

Books – before you leave for your holiday, you could make a special trip to the library to get some books for the holiday. Usually, children are only allowed to take out a certain number of books at once on their library card, so it might be a good idea to ration them while you are away; a new book every three days, for example, differing of course depending on how much they were allowed, and how long you were away. If you have older children, there is a chance that they would like to read a travel guide about the country that they are in.

Electronics – most children enjoy playing games when they are at home, and these are great for passing time during the journey. If you are able to do so, it can be a good idea to treat each child to a new game before they leave, as this means that you can be sure that they will have plenty to keep them occupied. You can buy second hand games cheaply, meaning that they would have plenty to choose from. It is a good idea to give your child headphones for their device, as this means that you would not have to listen to endless music and sound effects. You should also make sure that you have packed the correct chargers and spare batteries, as this stops power issues half way through the journey. You may want to consider rechargeable batteries if the journey is a long one. If your child is playing games on a mobile phone, it is important to make sure you have disabled the Internet roaming to avoid the potential of a huge bill. Keeping Children Entertained on a Driving Holiday

Puzzle Books – you can buy these very cheaply from supermarkets, and they can keep children and adults alike occupied for a long time. Word searches are a good idea, as this is something that children can do on their own without needing any help. If you have older children, you may wish to purchase a book such as Sudoku or crossword puzzles. If you choose to do this, then you should ensure that you have enough pens and pencils so that these do not run out on the journey. Things like colouring books and dot-to-dot puzzles are also entertaining for younger children.

Audio Books – if you have a mobile phone or an mp3 player, there is a chance that you would be able to install audio books onto your device. This is good for a child, as it is something that they could listen to when you weren’t able to read to them. There are a number of different books available on the internet, meaning that there is no reason that they shouldn’t find something that would suit them.

Camera – before you leave the house, it is a good idea to give each child a photo album. They should be told that this is for their holiday memories, and that they will each be given a disposable camera they will be able to use whenever they like. This would keep them occupied during the journey, as they would be looking for good things that they could take photos with. However, children often get a little carried away with things like this, and they may have finished the entire film before an hour has passed!

Final Words of Wisdom

Ultimately, taking the family on a driving holiday can be one of the most rewarding things you can do for a number of reasons. If you make sure that you have prepared properly, you can have a wonderful time that you will all remember for life. Just a bit of preparation can make a lot of difference to the way that you’re able to enjoy your holiday, and this means that it is definitely worth taking the time to ensure you get it right.

If you are considering a driving holiday, take the time to explore car hire from We check all the major car hire companies to ensure you get the best price every time.

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