A family road trip can provide amazing memories for years to come. Despite long hours in the car, road trips can be exciting and relaxing. Before your family embarks on the journey, take some time to consider these five tips.

5 Tips For Family Road Trips

Service Your Vehicle

Before you embark on the journey, servicing your vehicle is the crucial first step. Remove everything from the vehicle, give it a thorough cleaning, and take out any items that are not vital. Carrying around extra, unnecessary weight in the trunk will negatively impact fuel efficiency. Prepare for emergencies. Make sure your cargo area is stocked with a spare tire, tire pump and gauge, car jack and tire iron, and jumper cables. Next, car maintenance is on the list. Things such as changing the oil, checking the tires, and inspecting or changing brakes should be done by an expert.

Plan Stops

Attempting to plan the route while on the road will make for a frustrating trip. Instead, talk to your family about what stops they would like to make. Each state should have information online about landmarks and places to visit.

Another idea is to check the towns for restaurant reviews. There might be popular gourmet cafes or local restaurants. Go for barbecue if you’re passing through Kansas City, try local favorite Pickleman’s after visiting the St. Louis Arch, and don’t you dare leave Louisiana without having gumbo. Checking out the local food will add another fun and adventurous element to your road trip.

Make a Snack Basket

Snacks are important items to bring along on a family trip. Though tempting, buying snacks on the road is a sure way to overload on salty, fatty foods full of simple sugars that can flare tempers when the rush wears off. Healthy snacks will keep your family energized and your kids happy. A small basket or bag should be placed in an area of the vehicle that everyone can reach. Pack items that travel well, like granola bars, trail mix, potato chips, dried fruit, cereal bars, or fruit like bananas and apples.

Have a Full First Aid Kit

Being sick or injured on a road trip can ruin the experience. Sometimes, these incidents can occur when there isn’t a nearby store. You should bring along a full first aid kit that includes anti-nausea medicine, pain medicine, Band-aids, triple antibiotic cream, and allergy medication.

Have Entertainment

You are going to need some entertainment for the ride. If your children are old enough, card games like Uno or Old Maid are fun and easy. A fun music playlist will keep an upbeat mood in the car. If your kids are old enough, consider letting them handle the music for a while. You’ll never know what you might discover you actually like, and it will be a fun bonding activity for everyone, even if you don’t like their taste. If your children like Legos, make a small kit for them out of tin boxes. Have fun and be creative with entertainment ideas.

Above all else, make sure that you have fun. A road trip will introduce your family to new places and people while spending valuable time together.