Long drive must-haves for young families


Summer is here! It’s the season for long drives, beach trips, and adventures.

With all the new roads built, it becomes more encouraging to take road trips. The usual 5 to 7 hours going to Baguio is now cut down to 3 to 4 hours.

In the countryside, roads have also been improved, and one good example is in the province of Palawan.

But for families like us with little kids, a trip to Tagaytay is a production number of epic proportions. Strollers, cribs, sterilizers, etc.—you need to bring everything, and if the kitchen sink is not bolted on, you might have considered bringing it as well, just to make sure that you have a clean wash area for your kid’s bottles.

Each family is different. Some families are a lot more outdoorsy, while others like the city/hotels more (I’m the latter), so it would depend on what you think you would need.

Nonetheless, there are some essentials that you should have to ensure that a road trip is smooth sailing.

1. Car seats

If you are traveling with kids, it’s essential that you put them on a car seat.

In case of accidents, this will ensure that your kids are properly restrained from flying out the windshield in an accident.

Make sure that each passenger is individually strapped to a seatbelt.

2. Go bag

The idea of the Big One still looms, so it’s essential to bring a go bag just in case.

It should have a waterproof blanket, trash bag, ropes, whistle, flashlights and battery, portable radio, first aid kit and food.

3. Car parts that commonly break down

This includes a fan belt, fuses, and a working spare tire.

Sometimes, trying to source these items when you encounter a car problem takes time. Try going boy scout by having it on hand.

Don’t forget to bring a portable gas container as well.

4. Reusable water jugs and trash container

Be a conscious road user by lessening your carbon footprint.

Avoid buying drinks in individual plastic bottles on the road. Also, provide your passengers a trash bin that you can empty at stops.

Bringing your own drinks will also lessen your consumption of high sugar drinks that make your kids hyperactive and irritable.

5. Sun shade, ponchos, umbrella, foldable seat, and a waterproof picnic mat

If you need to stop for repairs, having these items not only makes life easier for you, but also for your passengers.

Happy passengers also reduces your stress level.

6. Car charger, spare phone, and sim card

In this day and age, everything is a phone call and browse away.

Make sure that you have enough juice for your cell phone, and for extra precaution, an extra phone.

7. Entertainment

Books, an iPad, games, foldable scooters, paper, and crayons.

Unless you don’t get irritated with the kids saying, “Are we there yet” every 5 minutes or are opposed to giving your kids Benadryl to knock them off for the whole duration of the trip, I suggest that you stock up on easy-to-play items in the car.

Bring some toys, too, that can help them stretch their limbs or spend their excess energy during stops.

8. Antibacterial wipes, mosquito replant, bite or anti-itch cream, antibacterial spray and medicines.

Some parents like to wing it and spend so much time trying to look for these items in the province when it’s only going to take you 10 to 15 minutes to buy and pack.

Make sure you have medicine for allergy, fever, pain and diarrhea—for both adults and kids.

9. A happy mindset.

They say that nothing can upset you unless you let it affect you.

Some of the happiest memories or experiences start with an unpleasant event that pushes you out of your comfort level. If you choose to make the most of the trip no matter what (vampire towns and all), then you are set to have a good time!

Road trips are indeed memorable times for families. Spending a few extra minutes to prepare will not only give you peace of mind, but will also ensure that the memories you make are the happy ones!

Happy and safe driving!

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