Guest Post by Brandy Clark
Travel Hacks for the Busy Family
Traveling is a great way to see a new city, a new state, or even a new country. Planning for travels with your family can be fun but also stressful. When it comes to making memories, you don’t want memories of your family vacation to be filled with franticness, packing, unpacking, and an unhappy family. Below are some travel hacks for the busy family. These hacks are for traveling by car, by air, and once you’re in the hotel to make your vacation as fun and as stress free as possible.
Travel Hacks for the Busy Family – Packing
- Pack your kids’ outfits in Ziploc bags. Instead of having to rifle through your suitcase for your kids’ outfits every day, pack one complete outfit per day in a one-gallon Ziploc bag. This makes for an easy-access and no-fuss way to choose outfits. You can also keep a gallon-size Ziploc bag in your purse for emergencies like soiled pants or a barf bag while you’re traveling.
- Buy travel sizes of the things you normally use: toothpaste, soap, mouthwash, shampoo, and the like. It saves space in your suitcases and for a few dollars makes your lives easier.
- Use glasses cases for USB chargers, cords, and headphones. Electronic devices can be a necessity to keep kids distracted while on the road. Buy a cheap glasses case at the dollar store to keep these cords neat and organized.
- Restaurants are a big expense while traveling. When you are packing, pack your food and plan to stop at rest stops where you can eat, stretch your legs, and where your kids can get a lot of that pent-up energy out. You can also make a snack pack out of a Rainbow Loom Box to hold a variety of healthy snacks for when someone gets the munchies.
- If you have little ones still in diapers, make a diaper-changing station to take with you on the road. It consists of diapers, wet wipes, and a plastic bag for dirty diapers. This way, you don’t have to rely on gas stations or rest stops when your little one needs a change. Also, wet wipes are handy to generally feel fresh and clean.
- When you are packing, instead of packing per person, pack all your everyday clothes in one bag, all your shoes in another, all your formalwear in another. This way you’re not rummaging through bags trying to find what each of you need, and you know exactly where everything is. You can also wrap up each pair of shoes in a disposable shower cap to keep them clean and separated from one another.
- It is worth it to pack a device like the Scrubba Wash Bag, for an easy and quick way to wash clothes while on the road, and then dirty clothes won’t be mixed with clean ones in your bags.
Travel Hacks for the Busy Family – Car Essentials
- Your car insurance should be the first thing on your mind, so you will be protected no matter where you are traveling. Make sure you check into either your current insurance policy or, if you are taking a rental car, rental car insurance.
- Make a DIY first aid kit for your car. You never know when something will happen, and having Band-Aids, aspirin, Neosporin, and other things helps you with the surprise cut or scrape.
- Pack empty water bottles to fill up at water fountains at gas stations and rest stops.
- Have a furry friend? Make sure you keep these tips in mind so you will have a happy dog no matter how long your road trip is.
- Kids are messy. That is a given. Consider investing in a “backseat saver” that way you can keep your backseat neat and clean.
- Get a cereal dispenser and line it with a plastic bag to keep trash in one place.
- Have an electronic device like an iPad? Do you not want the kids fighting over it? Make a DIY tablet holder to turn your backseat into a mobile theater and enjoy the peace and quiet for a few hours. You can also invest in a headphone splitter to stop the fight over the electronic devices.
- If you own a Kindle Fire, you can buy extra storage and set it up to download movies. This way, you can leave the extra devices at home.
- Keep things organized by using either a Backseat Toy Caddy, the Luxury Car Back Seat Organizer, or simple things like a bucket, a shoe hanger, or various plastic containers.
- There are other ways to keep kids busy besides electronic devices. You can go to the dollar store and buy various coloring books, activity pads, games, and stickers to keep your little ones occupied, or you can take inspiration from the list below. Here are some examples of activities, toys, and games you can make or buy for your kids to keep their minds occupied:
- The “Are we there yet?” questions are inevitable. To quell those questions, you can do such things as a countdown to arrival, glitter calm-down bottles, “are we there yet? Bags” and the “are we there?” map.
Travel Hacks for the Busy Family – The Hotel Room
- You can use things like blue painter’s tape to cover outlets and sharp corners as a way of child-proofing the room.
- Chip clips can keep the curtains closed so everyone can snooze and sleep in.
- Coffee makers can be used to boil water. Pack instant oatmeal, ramen noodles, and mac and cheese cups for quick early-morning or late-night meals.
- Use the ice bucket liner as a way of minimizing the diaper stink until housekeeping can get around to emptying your trash the next day. You can also pack gallon Ziploc bags, which serve the same purpose.
- Save on your budget by choosing a hotel with a free continential breakfast or by taking note of these tips on how to meal plan while on vacation.
- Want some alone time with your spouse? Ask your hotel for a list of local daycares or babysitters. Some hotels even have daycares on site.
Travel Hacks for the Busy Family – Out and About
- If you are going to be out and about, make a Child ID or a phone number bracelet in case the worst happens and you and your child get separated.
- Put older kids in charge. Have them hold younger siblings’ hands, have them hold things like tickets, point out lost and founds. This will teach them valuable skills and let them know what to do when they lose something or can’t find you.
- Make sure you have packed comfy clothes and shoes. You will not be able to enjoy your vacation if your feet are covered in blisters.
These are the various travel hacks for a stress-free and fun vacation. Now get out there and make those memories!
Bio: Brandy Clark is a freelance copywriter at autoinsurance.org and likes to write horror for fun at https://nofspodcast.com/author/brandy-clark/. When it comes to horror, the best horror movie is John Carpenter’s The Thing. She resides in Missouri with her two dogs, Layla and Hayley, but likes to travel whenever she can, her most recent trip being to Indianapolis, Indiana.