Keeping Kids Occupied on Long DrivesI’m getting ready for a long car ride with four young children. And even though my kids are great traveling kids, I always get a bit anxious at the prospect of six of us in the car for so long. I’ve been working this week on putting together a bag of fun things for each child, and I think that they are really going to help keep them occupied for several hours. In spite of the dangers children face watching TV, I’ve borrowed a double DVD/ portable TV player from the family for the trip. Don’t worry, we will check all the content they consume is age-appropriate for them! I was toying with the idea of just getting our car shipped out to where we are going. I even looked up things like ‘Cars Arrive Auto Relocation‘, as this way I’m sure we could find a quicker way to get there (like take a plane), but my husband actually enjoys driving, so there’s no point in doing that – if it was just me driving though, then maybe I would consider it.

Saying that though, I’m actually looking forward to the long drive, as a time to do some reading, crocheting and chatting with my husband. He’s been working long hours lately, so time for conversations has been more limited.
Below is a list of some of the things I put together in the kids traveling bags to keep them occupied.

Keeping Kids Occupied on a Long Drive ::

~ Travel Bingo
~ Printable games the kids can play with each other in the car
~ A new magazine for each child (a special treat!)
~ A few small toys
~ Snacks (I made trail mix, one of their favorites)
~ Water Bottles
~ Summer Journals for documenting the trip
~ Magnet board sets
~ a Melissa & Doug Memory Game that my parents gave Ella
~ Colored pencils and paper
~ Sometimes for really long trips I might buy each child a small new toy or book and wrap it up for them to open up while we are on the drive. It’s amazing how entertaining a new item can be.

Once you get to your destination these items can be a great distraction on a rainy day. And when we get home, I keep many of the items on this list in a special box, and only take them out for traveling, so the kids don’t get to see them very often…which makes them seem like something new!

What are your tips for keeping kids occupied for a long drive?

PS…I do not travel with my children sitting on top of pillows and blankets while we drive. The above picture was taken on “pack-up” day after camping all weekend. Max had no interest in packing up.