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How to Prepare for a Big Road Trip With the Kids

Road trips are so much fun to take with your family. They let you see the world and experience life on the road. Here’s a post about how to prepare for a big road trip with kids. Forget the tourist traps and the overdone sights; with a road trip, you can get out there and see the real world in all its authenticity. You’ll save money, have a more unique, holistic experience on your trip, and discover new things together as a family. 

Be Realistic with Your Budget 

Road trips can become very expensive very quickly. Though they can certainly be budget-friendly going in with that assumption without planning is the easiest way to go over your budget without expecting it. 

There are a lot of running costs associated with a road trip. From the insurance to the petrol, to the cost of natural gas for your hob right down to the cost of removing your sewage. Know what these costs are in advance so that you can better budget and accommodate them comfortably. 

Choose a Destination that is Age-Appropriate 

Not every destination is going to be age-appropriate. Young kids cannot go for long distances without getting tired, so big hikes are out of the question. Instead, you will want to go to an area that has a lot of child-friendly activities and encourages you to bed down in an RV or campsite and enjoy the day at a leisurely pace. 

As the kids get older, you can go for longer, more exciting road trips and activities. Instead of doing one campsite, you can do the national park. Or, instead of doing one national park, you can go on a road trip through Europe. Instead of walks, you can do hikes, instead of swimming, you can go kayaking, etc. Just make sure that everyone in your party is physically fit and comfortable with the type of trip you are taking. 

How to Plan Out Your Route 

There are a few things that you will want to keep in mind when going on your road trip. 

traffic jam

Stop Frequently for Breaks and Adventures 

The only time you drive three or more hours straight should be when you leave the house to the area you are exploring. After that, stops are the name of the game. Stop for lunch, stop for a picnic, for a swim, for a hike – it is these stops that make it worthwhile. Not every stop has to be in the top ten list. Make note of the hotspots in the area, yes, but be spontaneous and get out every hour or so at least to stretch out your legs and keep everyone in good humor. 

Know Where Emergency Services and Support Stations Are 

It is wise to know what the emergency numbers in the area you are going to are, and not just the equivalent of 999, either. Save roadside assistance numbers and know the location of support stations like rest stops, garages that offer emergency assistance, and even walk-in clinics. This way you will know where to go in any non-life threatening emergency. 

Research and Find the Best Routes 

You are on a road trip, and therefore the most direct route to a destination is not the best one. Instead, look up scenic routes throughout the area you are exploring. These routes will be beautiful to look at and often include plenty of scenic points for you to stop off at. 

Skip the Uncomfortable Motels and Bring Your Home with You 

The one big issue with road trips is accommodation. The most common solution is to book a hotel or motel for a night, but the closer you get to tourist hotspots, the higher those prices will become. In order to travel in comfort and bring a little piece of home with you wherever you go, you will want to find a great RV for sale. With an RV, you can turn a big road trip into a family tradition and really get to know your destinations. 

Research and Know Your Options 

Over-planning is a huge problem with road trips because people typically underestimate how tiring it is to drive for long periods of time. By researching your options and planning a general route, you can then decide on the day where you want to go and what you want to do. Something you may have been planning to last all day might only take a couple of hours, but by having your options open, you can customise your trip as necessary. 

Pack Appropriately to Always be Comfortable 

Thermal layers are your best friend to accommodate the very volatile weather in the UK. Thermals, along with waterproof gear, will keep you dry and cool so that you can feel comfortable and happy when travelling long distances or exploring a destination on foot. 

Expand Your Policy or Opt for Travel Insurance

You always need to check to ensure that your insurance covers you at your destination. With Brexit, things like healthcare in Europe might change. Auto insurance coverage similarly might differ. Always check your coverage just before you leave, expand it if necessary, and if that is not possible then opt for travel insurance. 

Travel insurance is so important, in fact, it should be purchased every time, even if you are just going for a road trip through the Lakes District. The reason to opt for travel insurance is to cover you for unexpected costs, especially if you are travelling through Europe or are going on a trip outside of the continent. 

Bring Gear, But Not Too Much 

If you are planning to go kayaking, or cycling, or any other activity on your trip, it is tempting to bring all the gear you need. Unfortunately, there is a good chance you won’t need all of it. In light of this, it is always wise to look at your destinations and see what the rental rate of these items are. If they are within budget, it might be best to leave the gear at home rather than go through the effort of bringing it with you. 

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