We’ve enjoyed a few long car journeys over the summer holidays. As my children have got older they need different things to keep them busy. Gone are the days of a dummy and a cuddly toy. Now my 6 and 7 year olds demand iPads and endless snacks.
We’ve always said they can only have screen time in moderation so we balance the use of iPads with other things. With half term in sight I thought it was a good time to pull together my 7 travel essentials for car journeys with kids.
7 travel essentials for car journeys with kids
Both my children have a Busy Box. This is such a simple idea. Basically you take a container (with a lid!) and fill it with their favourite toys. We made my son a Lego Busy Box a few years ago by cutting base plates to fit inside the bottom of the box and the lid. He filled it with his favourite Lego and it keeps him busy whilst we’re on the road. My daughter has a Sylvanian Families Busy Box which she’s filled with her favourite babies and accessories.
My children have always loved their Top Trump cards. I’m not afraid to admit we have quite a few packs but these are great. Sometimes me children love to play together and sometimes they like to play on their own. Top Trumps are always fun.
It can be hard trying to balance screen time and we always try to make sure the children have time on the iPads or Nintendo Switch. We recently discovered Snuggly Rascals headphones which are super comfy headphones for kids. they come in lots of great animal designs (we have unicorn!) and not only are the easily adjusted but they are volume limited so you don’t need to worry about your child having the volume too high. They are perfect for travel although my daughter likes to wear them at home too. Snuggly Rascals Comfortable Headphones for Kids are available from £14.99 from Snuggly Rascals
Another game which is fun to play is Pass the Pigs. You can read our review of it here but it’s a fun game for two or more players and can just about be played in the car. It’s great for taking to restaurants and the pub too!
We’ve only recently tried listening to audio books in the car. They are great for listening to at bed time but I love audio books and the children like listening to them in the car too. They are quite close in age and thankfully they enjoy the same kinds of books too. Julia Donaldson used to be a favourite but we’re currently listening to all the Harry Potter books.
You can never go wrong with the latest magazine or books. During the Summer holidays we’re regular visitors to our local library where the children always sign up to the Summer Reading Challenge. It can be harder to make time for visiting the library during the winter months but I try to buy plenty of books from our local charity shops. My 7 year old is currently devouring The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series whilst my 6 year old loves Rainbow Magic.
Snacks! We can’t go anywhere without a bag of snacks and drinks. Over the years we’ve got this down to a fine art. I bake homemade gingerbread for us all, as well as a few BEAR YoYos for the children. Thankfully they love them and the collectible cards inside seem to help (not that they need much encouragement).