If you grew up chanting the lyrics to the ants-go-marching song during long car trips, you know how challenging it is to travel with family. Car songs and games become all the more challenging the more people you add to the mix. If you have a big family and want your car rides to be more stress-free, you’ll have to plan for that. Fortunately, there are a bunch of little hacks that allow your big family to ride in comfort. Here are just four of them:
1. Car Care
A lot of kids can mean a lot of fingerprints on your car window. To keep messes to a minimum, bring glass cleaner and paper towels to clean up the glass. The catch is to have the kids who made the mess clean up the mess. Kids who have to clean the windows will be less likely to make messes in the first place. Other things that you can do to help keep messes to a minimum is to keep a cereal box in your car that has a grocery bag in it to act as a liner. This can then be your trash can and help keep the garbage from piling up.
2. Shop Around
Deal-shopping seems to go hand in hand with having a big family. However, time is of the essence when you have a large brood. That’s where car finding sites, like AK Car Finder, can come in handy. Just type in the model of car you want plus the ZIP code you want to find it in. You’ll get an array of choices in just a matter of seconds. Once you’re on the main search page, you can adjust your search even further by changing the prices, the mileage, the year, and a slew of other features.
3. Car Rentals
If your next big trip involves flying and driving, you may be put into a position where you need to rent a car. Family units that have seven or more, however, may be at a loss for finding a vehicle that’s big enough to carry them. There’s the additional possibility that there’s an SUV big enough, but it could be cost prohibitive. If either of these scenarios turn out to be the case, you should check into the price of getting two smaller cars. (Clearly, you need two drivers in the family for this.) This has an additional advantage besides cost savings. It’s always possible for your kids to trade cars if their siblings start to get on their nerves.
4. Road Trips
When you have a brood of six or more, the time to get them acquainted to the open road is not during a long trip. Instead, if you have a lengthy adventure planned, start getting your kids acclimated to being the car by taking shorter trips first. Start with trips to see friends or family who live only a couple of hours away. From there, you can build up to trips that last eight or 10 hours or even days.
Having a big family doesn’t mean you can have a comfortable ride. Accommodating a family of four or more people does require planning, though, if you’d like to accomplish this goal. Shopping around for cars using comparison sites will save you money, while renting two cars on long trips will allow everyone to fit. Finally, car care and upkeep is possible if you give yourself and your kids the tools to do it.