My top two tips for a pain free road trip are Maccas and iPad’s!
Seriously though, these are the things that got me through 10 hours driving each way on our road trip to Sydney recently. I don’t know how our parents coped pre- technology. What did we do as kids on a road trip….actually look out the window?
I have done many Road trips before kids but taking kids, not one, not two, not three but four is a whole different ball game. That’s four times the whingeing and four times the toilet stops, and four times the ‘I’m hungry’s’ and ‘are we there yet’s’!! I am pleased to say I made it and I am still sane.
Our game plan was Maccas for breakfast, lunch and dinner, if necessary. For everyone to pack a back pack of their own things to do and for me to take all my old CD’s for some sing- a- longs.
We left as soon as we got up to avoid the peak hour traffic going out of Melbourne but also coming into Sydney on the other end. We made sure everyone went to the toilet even if they did not need to. My rule is you go anyhow, and of course they always manage to squeeze something out.
The reason we stop at Maccas is because the toilets are relatively clean compared to the public offerings along the way at truck stops and the like. We also know what is on the menu so can have a pre- planned idea of what we are all ordering, then we can grab (requesting separate bags for each person’s meal) and run to continue our journey. My kids all enjoy Maccas so it’s a good bribe to earn some extra peace time.
The bags they packed had some school homework, some colouring in, some little toys, and of course the technology that gets us through. With the iPad’s loaded up with the latest fad games, we took hour turns to each use the preferred devices. I think this time my kids played alpaca world for almost 10 hours straight and I did not care one bit. The curiosity of the appeal of the game made me have a go myself on our return. I’m pleased to say my Alpacas are breeding well, lol.
With family in another state we try and visit at least once a year. The last time we did a road trip to Sydney we only had two kids and the youngest was only one. It has been 10 years since we last drove all that way and I have clear memories of changing a dirty nappy in a truck stop and being swamped with a million flies, thank goodness our nappy days are over….so this makes the trip a little bit easier. Back then I had a 2-year-old, who watch Dora the Explorer DVD’s for 10 hours straight and she loved that too. She was able to speak some Spanish by the time we arrived, given Dora is educational as well.
I did get the ‘are we there yet’s’ and the ‘I’m hungry’s’ but with my Beaches movie CD turned up loud enough it was not really that annoying. Well, we all survived!
P.S the current spicy chicken nuggets at Maccas are pretty good at the moment.
So why not fly? Firstly, cost…to get 5 people to Sydney from Melbourne and back is going to be over $1000 at the very least. Secondly, once there, with 5 extra people we don’t fit, as extras, in a standard car, so it’s handy to have our own seven seater to be able to visit places. Plus, there is the the bonus of being able to take what you want without any luggage restrictions. Although, space was still a little limited with all our bodies.
If you are after a relatively cheap get away, why not road trip?….if I can do it with 4 kids, so can you. I can always help with the accommodation arrangements once there 😊