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December 06, 2023

Where Every Family Matters

Roadtripping With Kids – Just Do It!

The greatest family stories and memories come out of those long and often dusty road trips!

Authentic, affordable adventures with kids worthy of selfies and Instagram posts are in! With gas prices down, AAA says the summer of ‘17 is shaping up like last year: There’s every indication that you’ll travel on the road this summer. Guess what? Road travel provides one of the best ways to create family memories and that feeling … after you’ve grown up, that is … that there was something fantastic about your childhood … that time Mom and Dad took us out west …
    Here are great tips and apps to make your next travel road trip an event to remember!

 

POPULAR Road Trips with Kids

Big Sur, CA; Jackson Hole, WY; Big Sky, MT; Cowboy Country, Dallas TX; Charleston, SC
Washington, D.C.; Zion National Park, UT; New Orleans, LA; Boston, MA; Portland, ME; San Francisco, CA

 

Great Travel Apps

AAA Mobile
Use it as a trip planner and if you need roadside assistance.

Field Trip
Find sites of interest around you wherever you are.

GasBuddy
Know where to find your next fill up.

HotelTonight
Last-minute discounts on vacancies — remember a pool for the kids!

RoadTrippers
Find everything from attractions to diners.

SitorSquat
Need a clean public restroom fast?

TollSmart
To quickly look up fees for bridges, tunnels and turnpikes.

Triposo
Lose your Internet connection? Good thing you can get your map offline here.

TV Food Maps
Find eateries like those on TV such as Bizarre Foods America and Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

Waze
Crowd source traffic jams to know what’s going on and what to do.

Yelp
You know this app, but use it on the road for reviews before you buy!

 

 

 

 

 

My Road Trip Tips

• Stop for treats for the kids — even if it’s candy from the gas station

• See friends & family   
   along your route

• Leave early, stop early

• Try to swim at the end of  
   the day

• Let kids get ice from the  
   machine at your motel

• Plan your trip, but leave room for  
   spontaneity

• Visit unique sites along the way

• Keep a cooler with drinks

• Load tablets with books (don’t
   forget the summer reading!),
   movies and games

 

Packing For Kids

• Clothes/Toiletries

• Baby/Toddler stuff

• Books, magazines, games

• Washable markers
 
• Sketchbooks

• Etch-a-Sketch, Magna Doodle, White board

• Movies galore

• Headphones for all

• Books on tape

• Pre-packaged snacks

• Reusable water bottles

• Emergency kit including jumper cables, first aid kit with medicines,
   flashlight and batteries, road flares, reflective triangles, blanket

• Garbage bags

• Pillows for all

• Change of clothes for each child

• Paper towels, tissues

• Air mattress in case you need one in a motel

• Camping items if
camping

• Road atlas

• Car chargers

• Addresses of relatives

• List of sites you want to see along the way

• Cash for tolls

• Swim goggles & wear

• Frisbee, Wiffle ball, other sports’ items kids like

• Port-a-potty if you need

• A sense for adventure

Now hit the road, jack. And don’t ya come back, no more, no more, no more, no more!

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About the Author

Susan Swindell Day, Editor

Susan Swindell Day is the editor in chief of Nashville Parent and the mom of four amazing kids.