Leaving before the sun comes up helps make traveling with preschoolers easy. The kids were less likely to wake up cranky and traveled better than when we left later in the day. It also gives Mom and Dad a chance to catch up before the kids need attention.
Clothes make a difference.
When it comes to surviving a road trip with preschoolers, what they wear to bed makes a difference. Dress them in soft clothing the night before a trip. The next morning, all you have to do is take care of personal needs and put them in the car. The kids can get dressed later in the morning when they are awake and when you need to make a stop.
Start packing a few days ahead of time.
Take your time when packing by starting early. You'll be less likely to forget something if you start packing a few days before the trip. Some of your items, extra batteries, clothes that the kids can do without for a couple of days, small toys and prepacked snacks can be packed a few days in advance. The car can be 95% packed the day before you leave.
Comfort items are a must.
Pack at least two comfort items in a tote bag and don't forget the bag. In case one item is lost (gasp!), then the second item may help.
Be prepared to run the air conditioner occasionally no matter what the season. Cool air helps prevent back seat car sickness and reduces temper flares. It's one of the tips about how to survive a road trip with preschoolers that really helped.
Let them run.
Don't let the kids get too cranky before pulling off the interstate. A good atlas will have the rest areas marked. Pack bubbles or a small ball and let them run in a grassy rest area. Be sure to keep an eye on the kiddos they don't don't stray too far or go the wrong way - just as you would at home.
If you want to survive a road trip with preschoolers, then car activities are a must. Avoid crayons and markers. Opt instead of colored pencils, stuffed animals, small cars or plastic items that won't melt on very hot summer days. .
Take care of yourself.
A vacation with kids can take a lot out of you. Adults who take care of their needs can better take care of the kids. There will be stress filled moments on the trip. One of the things that you can do to make traveling with preschoolers easy is to take care of yourself too.