If you are planning a big road trip that crosses several states- it can be hard for kids to have a picture in their heads of exactly where you're going, how far it is, and what the journey looks like on a map. So to help create that picture, I borrowed an idea that I had seen on an airplane trip, where the TV screen showed exactly where the plane was while in flight. Here's how you can avoid the constant question of “Are We There Yet?” on your family road trips!
This low-tech method of tracking your road trip is actually a lot of fun!
I purchased a laminated wall map This is an affiliate link: MomOf6 earns a commission if you purchase, at no additional cost to you. of the United States, and I sketched out our route so the kids can follow along, and I tacked it to the soft ceiling of our car using thumbtacks.
I also laminated a little “Mommy bus” that I can move along our route according to where we are on our family road trip! (I purchased our own home laminating machine This is an affiliate link: MomOf6 earns a commission if you purchase, at no additional cost to you. a long time ago- and use it often for fun projects like these!)
At the top of our map, I outlined for the kids where we're headed for the current day, how many miles we will drive, and how many hours it will take to arrive at our destination. I also let them know approximately what time we should arrive.
Hopefully, that will minimize the constant questions of “How much longer?” and “Are we there yet?”
Another handy-dandy item that I've tacked onto a wall of the car is a “check-in checklist” for the kids to use when we arrive at a hotel.
I want us to be able to clean up and organize the car so that it's ready for the next day's adventures. I also assign each child a role as to what they're going to help me carry into the hotel- the clothing, the PJs, the swim bag, the toiletries bag, etc.
The checklist also reminds the kids that they need to be quiet when we walk into a hotel- we are a large group, and we can make a lot of noise!
Planning a Family Road Trip?
You might want to check out these other posts that offer tips and advice on planning and packing for road trips:
- Printable Road Trip Planner– a free printable and planning guide to help you plan your next road trip!
- Free Printable Road Trip Packing List
- How to Pack the Inside of Your Car for a Road Trip
- How to Plan a Great American Road Trip
- The Best Car Coolers for a Family Road Trip
And if you are looking for some more cool destinations:
- 10 Great Things to Do in Atlanta with Kids!
- 10 Great Things to Do In South Dakota with Kids!
- Great Things to Do in Bar Harbor, Maine with Kids!
- Things to Do in Williamsburg with Kids!
- Things to Do in New Smyrna Beach Florida with Kids!
- 5 Reasons to Visit Mammoth Caves with Kids
- 7 Great Things to Do in Lake Placid with Kids
Mindi Stavish says
I love how organized you are Sharon! This is awesome. Wow that’s a whole lot of miles…I am going to remember how far you brought all your kids on our fall trip to New England and not compalin so much! 🙂
Keep in mind that my kids have been “well trained” for long road trips- by logging many miles even as babies out to the midwest to see grandparents, and even down to Florida. Plus- the older they get, the more they can keep themselves entertained in the car! Good luck Mindi!
So clever. This should make the trip even more fun.