This road trip packing list contains all the key items that make your life easier and road-tripping with kids more enjoyable. There are obvious things you don’t need someone else to tell you to like how many socks or t-shirts to pack for your upcoming road trip, or to remind you to carry car registration and insurance documents or a passport if visiting a foreign country.
Here are some of the basic things you must add on your packing list with kids for a road trip.
Tablet/ DVD player/ or an MP3 player to keep your kids entertained in the car. Ensure that you pack your favorite CD collection for a family road trip. If you are road tripping with kids, you will never get a chance to listen to it anyway. Instead, make sure you have plenty of DVDs with children’s movies, a tablet with some games, or an MP3 player with audiobooks for children. Make sure you also pack chargers for each of these devices. That’s where the battery pack comes in handy.
First aid kit
It is good to have a First Aid kit on any trip, but it’s a life-saver on a family road trip.
Pack your mosquito repellant spray or mosquito repellant bracelets which also seem to work well too.
Please pack your sunscreen lotion for the good of your skin and the children to protect you and the kids from the harsh sun.
Car seats for kids adjusted for their age.
When children sit in a car for hours, they must be comfortable, safe, and also have good head support. When you rent a car for a road trip you should never rent children’s car seats, carry your own if you can.
Car seat organizer.
Car seat organizers are useful if your family likes road trips a lot. They properly hold all the kids’ stuff in one place and will save you lots of frustrations (‘mom, where is my…’ or ‘dad, could you pass me my… ‘).
Activity books, coloring books, and crayons, pencils and pens
These will help keep the kids busy at some point when you reach your destinations.
Snack container with separate compartments
This will help you carry different snacks like dried fruit, nuts, and cookies for all your kids.
Printed map, road atlas and a travel guide of the area you are traveling to. Do you want to drive on the main highways all the time when there might be an alternative scenic road leading to your next destination? Plan your trip well to include some stopovers for the kids to play, add a few off the beaten path places to your itinerary. When you use a good old fashioned map you can see so much more!
You will use it more often than you expected from peeling apples and carrots in the car, to repairing a broken air pipe of our car’s engine. And have a couple of screwdrivers in the car to use on your road trip.
Instant stain removers/wipes
Kids are likely to pour their drinks and foodstuffs on themselves and in the car at any time, you must be ready to clean all the time.
Paper tissues, wet tissues, kitchen towels.
These are some of the crucial items you must add on your packing list for kids. You will need all of these when road-tripping with kids.
They’re very handy for any road trip especially when kids pour drinks into your car or on their clothes.
You may not afford to carry umbrellas for each of the kids when we travel, but a good light waterproof jacket is a must.
We have small binoculars for each of the kids and it keeps them busy on the road and also helps to reduce their disruption to you.
Headphones help you disconnect from those moments when the kids get too loud in the car.
Neck pillows and blankets.
Neck pillows and blankets help you when you feel tired and you want to catch sleep for a few hours or your kids.
Toys for kids.
Leave all the noisy toys at home and carry just a few for your kids to make them busy on your road trip.
Clothes and shoes. Pack fewer clothes and shoes that only cater for the period you will be on safari and make sure you can layer when needed.
Ball or a Frisbee. If you have some more space in the car, it’s good to pack a ball. It’s a great way to get the kids tired during short stops on the road.
You will need an extra flashlight to save your phone battery.
CONCLUSION: The list for things to pack while on a road trip with kids is not limited to the above only but with them, you will have most (if not all) of your activities covered.