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Avanti Travel Insurance blog

Image of family traveling in car
5 Sep

Travel tips for long family car journeys

If you’re going on a long car journey with children, some advance planning can really help. Here are my tips to help your journey go as smoothly as possible.


Before the journey

  • Plan the route, including where to stop off, because you’ll all need to stretch your legs, refuel, and find a bathroom every so often. Involve the kids in the planning so that they know where you’re going and how long it should take.
  • Charge up your phones and other gadgets.
  • Make sure that everyone’s been to the loo or has a clean nappy.
  • Get everyone to have a meal so that you don’t start off hungry and thirsty.
  • Load films onto a tablet or take a DVD player with films for the kids to watch on the trip.
  • If you’re travelling with very young children, try to set off when they’re likely to sleep.


What to pack

  • An insulated cool bag with bottles of water and non-sticky snacks and sandwiches.
  • If it’s hot, take frozen drinks which will defrost slowly as you travel.
  • If it’s cold, pack a thermos of tea or coffee to drink when you stop.
  • Leads for charging your gadgets in the car.
  • Headphones for anyone who wants to listen to something on their own.
  • Wear comfortable clothes, and take extra layers in case it gets chilly.
  • Fleecy blankets and travel pillows will help children to get comfortable and sleep in the car.
  • A bunch of plastic bags – they’re invaluable for rubbish, dirty clothes, leftover food, and for anyone who’s car sick.
  • For younger children, have a potty in the car, just in case.


On the journey

  • Share the driving if it’s too much for one person.
  • Play games such as car bingo, I Spy and spotting cars of a certain colour. Or make up your own games and stories – let your imagination run free!
  • Listen to music or stories – take turns in choosing what to listen to if you can’t all agree.
  • When you stop, allow time for the kids to run around and burn off some energy.


Over to you

Do you have any tips to add to the list?