Traveling the country in an RV with your family can be one of the most satisfying and memorable experiences of your (and their) lifetime. Seeing new places together for the first time, sharing new experiences and trying local foods are all joys of the RVing life. But, as always in life, this exciting trip can also come with some less than joyful parts. We are here today to help you plan for the low moments and learn how to survive an RV road trip with kids.
On The Road – Driving Time
One of the most common mistakes made when planning a family RV trip is underestimating the drive time. While your handy map and travel apps will tell you it takes “x amount of time to get from here to there”, it isn’t going to be completely accurate. These apps are basing their calculations on a car, not on a motorhome or truck and trailer rig.
The other issue that new RVers aren’t aware of is the mental and physical toll driving a bigger rig will have on them. While you should always be concentrating on all your driving, you must be hyper-vigilant in an RV. This constant awareness will cause you to tire easier and sooner than if you were just driving your car. Then you add noisy, bored kids to the mix. You’re going to be wanting more frequent stops just to stretch and get some air. Plan accordingly and leave plenty of wiggle room in your drive time.
Keep It Cool
Even though most families will be vacationing during the warmer summer months, you don’t have to go somewhere hot. High temperatures tend to bring out the worst in people. Imagine being stuck in a small area with hot, cranky kids who are bored.
Avoid crowded tourist traps and venture out into areas with a little more isolation. Find some parks or campgrounds in higher elevations where it’s cooler. You may even consider boondocking somewhere less traveled. If you play your cards right, you won’t even miss the AC.
It may sound funny but keeping everything clean and organized can help you keep the peace. Pack your belongings and gear away methodically with a plan. It makes life much easier when you (and your crew) know where things go and where to look for stuff. Camp set-up and camp tear-down go much smoother when everything has a place.
Give everyone in your party their own responsibilities and jobs. This can be bigger jobs such as preparing the site, RV hookup and cooking meals. Or you can designate camp maintenance tasks such as sweeping, garbage detail and setting the table to your younger campers. If you bring Fido or Fifi with you, put responsible kids in charge of doggy duties. Busy hands don’t have time to get bored or into trouble.
Engage Their Brains
There are a lot of ways to keep your kids busy both on the road and at camp. By including them in the trip planning, you will keep them interested and engaged. Let them study the routes and make it a learning experience. Do you know how many kids and younger adults have no idea how to read a map?
Get guidebooks and activity schedules for your destinations or possible stops. Have the kids choose things they would like to do. Make a game of learning the night sky or identifying the local wildlife and plant life.
How Will You Survive An RV Road Trip With Kids?
Now that you have a few ideas on how to cope with kids on the road, it should make your trip a lot less stressful. Do you have any tips that have helped you in the past? What kind of family RV trip are you looking forward to this summer?