In Search of Ways to Have a Comfortable Road Trip with Two Little Ones

Updated on May 22, 2009
R.A. asks from Granada Hills, CA
9 answers

Dear Moms,
We're headed on a road trip and I'd love some ideas of how to keep the little ones happy/content/entertained in the car. My older daughter will be 3 in August, and the little one will be a year old by travel time.
R. :)

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answers from Reno on

Put a Kiddie Kangaroo on each of their car seats. This soft pocket travel system provides each child with two generous divideable pockets to store their sippy cups, bottles, toys, snack packs and more within their reach thus freeing mom and dad to focus their eyes on the road while traveling. No more tears when your angel has dropped their toy or sippy cup as they can stow and retrieve their own items. You could place a new toy, book or snack pack in a pocket each day for them to find! Visit their website for a list of stores or purchase on line. "Kiddie Kangaroo...for babies on the go" comes highly recommended by many child travel advice sites and more!



answers from Honolulu on

We always sight see during the day and drive ALL night. That way the babies are sleeping and there are fewer cars on the road. A portable DVD player can be useful. Coloring crayons, books, finger foods... You'll be fine!!
Mom of 4


answers from Las Vegas on

Yep, all good suggestions! Plan a lot of rest stops. Your 3yr old might get board but if your little one is in the carrier, she also will need to stretch out and get out of that position, especially if you are traveling in hot, sticky weather. =)

Have fun, take lots of pictures and a video cam if you can. Road trips can be so much fun!



answers from Las Vegas on

So far all good suggestions! I just wanted to add that you can get the travel aqua doodle. You just fill the "pen" up with water and the board is small so it can fit in your child's lap. It awesome cause there is no mess.

My daughter loves to color so we have a clipboard for her to use while in the car.

We bring interactive books such as books with magnets to play with or pop-ups.

It makes travel easy when you can buy a few inexpensive new toys so that the kids have something exciting to play with.

Also, be sure to bring lots of snacks.

I don't know about yours, but my 1 year old sleeps in the car, so I didn't have to do anything to entertain him.

Have a fun and safe trip...



answers from Honolulu on

I agree to using a dvd for the longer, duller, stretches of road, especially if part of the trip is at night. During the day engage your daughter's imagination by having her point things out to you. My two love ispy games. Sing songs, if there is enough room in the back seat, sit with them for a while and read a book. I don't know how long your trip is, but my husband and I try to preplan rests by googling rest areas/stores along the route. I make sure to have a nice collection of kid cd's. Kids also like to move around, so for your older one you may want to try sitting stretching games to keep her moving yet safe in a car. I wish I could point you to a magic book or website, but I just normally make up stuff and I go along.

Good luck



answers from Honolulu on

Have you thought about putting a dvd player for the road trip? There ones you can buy from Wal-Mart and plug in the cigarette lighter in the car rather than spending mass amount on attaching one in the vehicle....their favorite toys, and frequent stops so they can stretch, some music of their favorite to play and sing along the way if they get tired of watching movies, coloring books, and favorite pictured and reading books. :)



answers from Los Angeles on

Where you going?
In addition to the previous ideas...
Download a lot of kid music for the road and get storybooks on CD. If you think she can do it, get your older daughter a CD player and headphones.
Fill a cup with crayons or colored pencils, put it in a reachable cup holder and give her a clipboard loaded with drawing paper or coloring books.
You can buy or make road sign scavenger hunt or bingo. Getting a list of the 50 states and marking off the license plates is another time killer but may be a little old for her(though it gave me and my hubby something to do). We drove to the Grand Canyon and Zion a couple weeks from Ca. We found all but 6 state license plates.
Check out this website and for fun places to stop allong the way.



answers from Las Vegas on

Hi R.:

I'm going to give you some radical advice here! We have taken a HUGE number of road trips since our kids were tiny babies. San Diego to LA, San Diego to Las Vegas, Las Vegas to Arizona, New York to Philly to Washington, D.C., Virginia to Indiana...on and on...and on! My husband and I believe that the whole purpose of going by car or train is to slow down the trip enough so that you can actually learn by what you're watching out the window and so you can stop and pursue interesting things along the way.

Here's the radical part: We never allowed our children to watch DVDs or read in the car because we didn't want to rob them of the whole experience. Not only that, but they quickly became such seasoned travelers that they have developed the patience of Job and their attention spans are tremendous! They also understand directions, distance and time...some adults don't even get those things.

During the trip, I have two sets of goodies: stuff for the car and stuff for the breaks and/or hotel rooms. For the car, I pack drinks, snacks and, for babies, teethers, rattles, and small toys. We play books on tape, music, we sing along, play verbal quizzes and guessing games and we talk. As they got older, they got handed good quality video and digital cameras and they could record whatever they wanted. For breaks, we have kites (the foldable kind) and frisbees to play with in parks or rest areas and for the hotel, we have board games and books and art supplies. Since yours are babies, I'd probably take play dough or blocks instead of the board games and increase the running around time at the park. (Your baby will probably sleep through most of the drive, like someone else mentioned!)

We have travelled with other families and childless people who have remarked at how much fun they've had with my interactive kids on trips. I think it's so much more fun to travel with kids who are engaged socially but you have to train them from very early on.

Have a wonderful time on your trip!




answers from San Diego on

Hi R., I would rent a van or an SUV that have the little TV's that you can play video's/movies, music video's would probably be the best with a one year old. J. L.

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