A baby can turn your life upside down, but family travel can still be a blast. Follow these tips to keeping your cool while road tripping with the little ones.
Transitioning into parenthood is a truly eye-opening experience, which is funny when you consider how sleep deprived most parents are the first year. It often seems like someone’s attached weights to your eyelids.
After the arrival of a new child, many new parents find themselves hesitant to engage in things they used to do without thought, like a spontaneous road trip. If it’s important to you that you keep on adventuring, here are a few ideas on how to road-trip safely and comfortably with a baby.
Here’s five tips that will help make the time spent together in the car as enjoyable as possible.
- Timing is Everything. Most kids’ morning naps occur around nine, so hitting the road just as they get sleepy can be a great way to make good time. The background noise will help them fall asleep. If they take an afternoon nap too, you’ll be able to make plenty of progress and they’ll be well-rested when by the time you arrive. If their naps are disrupted because the travel has thrown their routine off, tips #4 and #5 can be especially useful.
- Stop constantly. Between nap #1 and nap #2 is the time to stop and stretch, snack and take in the scenery. Taking care to pack thoughtfully will pay off during periods between stints of driving. There’s nothing worse than digging through bags and suitcases only to finally locate a diaper placed strategically in the furthest corner of the trunk.
- Maintain a comfortable temperature in the car. Infants lack the ability to regulate their body temperature the same way adults do. Many kids quickly overheat while in carseats, despite the AC on full blast. One huge advantage is solar window tint, because it noticeably reduces heat and glare in your car’s interior. Installing window tint will keep the interior of your car nice and cool, letting you use your AC for fine tuning the ambient temperature, rather than battling the full sun. Having your AC unit serviced before a trip also isn’t a bad idea. Comfortable baby = less fussing.
- Find some toys that occupy the mind. Infant car seats face backwards, how boring is that? Bringing a few soft and lightweight toys (hard objects can quickly become projectiles during a sudden stop or accident) is a great way for baby to stay entertained. No need to spend a lot of money, either. Even the dollar store has inexpensive, age appropriate toys.
- Pack double of everything. Kids can be very particular about certain things, like pacifiers or blankets. Pacifiers come in all shapes and sizes, and our kids each have a favourite, which means they’ll loudly reject any and all substitutions. Packing multiples of the right kind of pacifier, because it’ll go missing and chances the local drugstore doesn’t carry that brand.
With summer fully under way, we are excited about all the adventures that still await us. There is no need to keep your little ones couped up this summer – when done right, road trips can be fun for the whole family. If tip #3 caught your attention, just give us a call, we’re always happy to see how we can improve your vehicle.