Tips for Traveling with Kids

by NPHM | December 23rd, 2019

Whether you are making your way over the state border to visit Grandma for the holidays or are making a cross-country roadtrip to see the sights of America, traveling with children can occasionally be frustrating. Keeping them happy and occupied, so you can keep your eyes on the road and avoid accidents, is difficult, especially when you are driving for hours or even days at a time.

At Nurenberg Paris, we want to help Ohio parents stay safe on the road, and still keep the fun in roadtrips, which is why we’ve put together this guide to taking long car trips with kids.

The Necessities

When you start packing up the car, in addition to any suitcases or overnight supplies, don’t forget to pack these items!

  • Kid-friendly picture books or coloring books
  • A lap desk to make coloring easier—cookie sheets make a cheap and easy alternative!
  • A handheld video game console, portable DVD player, or smartphone or tablet loaded with kid-friendly games or videos — don’t forget the chargers!
  • Healthy snacks that won’t make a mess if they spill
  • A garbage bag, paper towels, and wet wipes to clean up any messes
  • Simple toys that can be played with while seated
  • A small pillow your child can rest against the window

Helpful Advice for Parents

These tips can help keep kids from getting too cranky on long trips.

  • Let your kids take part in loading up the car by allowing them to pack a small bag or box with what toys and books they want to bring.
  • Make sure young children are properly secured in their car seats and can’t unbuckle themselves mid-journey.
  • Don’t give your kids all their toys at once—try handing out a new snack or toy every 30 minutes or hour so they don’t get bored too soon and have something to look forward to.
  • Let them track your trip! Print out a map of your route and have your child place stickers to mark the progress to your destination.
  • Try making “snack jewelry” ahead of time. Make a necklace using string and small snacks with holes, such as pretzels or cheerios, that they can wear and munch on throughout the ride.
  • If you have very young children, try having one parent sit in back with them and play with them.
  • Plan plenty of bathroom breaks and make sure to stretch your legs, even if it delays your arrival time.
  • If your child gets carsick, try listening to kid-friendly audiobooks instead of reading or playing video games. Most libraries have an audiobook section that cardholders can check out, and library apps even let cardholders download audiobooks to their smartphones.

Car Games You Can Play Without Paper or Pens

When your kids lose interest in their toys, the whole family can enjoy these conversational games.

Story/Guessing Games

20 Questions

Players must try to guess what person, animal, or object another player is thinking of, but they can only ask yes-or-no questions. For example, “does it make noise?”, “is it alive?”, and so on. Players must guess what the mystery object is within 20 questions to win.

Guess the Word

One player uses their finger to write a word on another player’s arm or palm, and the player being written on must try to guess what word it is.

Team Storytelling

All players must tell a story, but must take turns telling it, and each player can only add one sentence at a time. See how wild you can get as each player takes the story in a new direction!

License Plate Abbreviations

Players use their imagination to decide what they think the letters on license plates they see mean. For example, a license plate that says “TAF” might mean, “turtles are fast.” Whoever comes up with the silliest or best answer wins.

Alphabet/Counting Games

The Alphabet Game

Each player competes to see who can find every letter of the alphabet, in order, by searching road signs, store signs, and billboards they see out the window. The first player to find every letter of the alphabet wins.

Alphabet Categories

Players select a category (ex: food, animals, cartoon characters, etc.) and then take turns finding items that fit that category for every letter of the alphabet, going in order. For example, if the category is animals, the first player might say “aardvark”, the next “bunny”, then “cat”, and so on.

The Picnic Game

Players take turns saying what food they would bring to a picnic. Each player on his or her turn adds one item that begins with the next letter of the alphabet. For example, the first player might say “apples”, the second player might say “apples and bananas”, the third player might say “apples, bananas, and cake”, and so on. The goal is to get through the entire alphabet without forgetting an item on the list.

My Name Is

Players take turns moving through the alphabet and filling in the phrases, “My name is”, “I come from”, and “I have a suitcase full of” with words that start with that each letter of the alphabet. For example, the first player might say, “My name is Amy, I come from Arkansas, and I have a suitcase full of apples,” while the second player might say, “My name is Billy, I come from Barcelona, and I have a suitcase full of bananas.”

The Counting Game

Players must count from one to twenty out loud, but players don’t need to take turns—anyone can go whenever they want. However, if two players speak at the same time, the game has to start over at one, and if more than five seconds go by without anyone saying a number, the game also starts over.

Download Our Free Activity Book

If you are looking for more ways to keep your kids entertained in the car, download our free children’s activity book by clicking the image below! Print out our book before a long car trip to get:

  • Coloring pages,
  • Word searches,
  • Mad libs,
  • Mazes, and
  • Tic-tac-toe games!

After a Car Accident, Call Nurenberg Paris

Unfortunately, car accidents happen every day, even on holidays and on vacation. If you or someone you love was injured in a car accident, whether it happened on a road trip or on the way to the grocery store, we want to help you.

Our Ohio car accident lawyers have the experience needed to negotiate with insurance companies to get you the compensation you deserve for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. And you pay us nothing unless we get you money. Contact us today for your free consultation.