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How To Survive A Road Trip To Florida With Kids + Extended Family

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Remember those exhilarating college road trips when we flung a backpack over our shoulder, hopped in the car, and just drove? Yeah… family road trips are not that. Add in-laws or other extended family to the mix and you’re basically overseeing a small nation. If your upcoming drive to sunny Florida has you wondering how […]

The post How To Survive A Road Trip To Florida With Kids + Extended Family appeared first on Scary Mommy.

Remember those exhilarating college road trips when we flung a backpack over our shoulder, hopped in the car, and just drove? Yeah… family road trips are not that. Add in-laws or other extended family to the mix and you’re basically overseeing a small nation. If your upcoming drive to sunny Florida has you wondering how you’re going to manage all these moving parts, keep everyone happy, and still have fun yourself, don’t worry — we’ve got you. Whether your family’s final Florida destination involves theme parks, manatees, or space rockets, here are some tips to help not only survive a family road trip, but truly enjoy it.

Delegate, Delegate, Delegate

You want your vacation to actually be a vacation. If playing Tetris with luggage in the trunk of your car sounds like a personal punishment, tell your partner you’ll pack if they’ll load. Give your kids a tackle box and have them fill up each compartment with the snacks of their choice. The important thing is to divide and conquer so mom doesn’t get stuck on snack duty, packing duty, “making sure everyone has enough underwear” duty, etc.

Load Up On Audiobooks And Podcasts

Once you’re on the road, the goal is just to keep everybody as chill as possible. When you get to a point where you’re all music-ed out, pop on a podcast or audiobook. Better yet, pop on a thematic podcast or audiobook. It’s only right to listen to all of Harry Potter before visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. And there are plenty of Disney audiobooks to entertain everyone as you make your way to Orlando. Planning to check out the Kennedy Space Center? Listen to The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian. Headed to Disney World? Alternate your princess soundtrack playlist with equally thematic podcasts like Cast Conversations, hosted by two former Disney Parks cast members. If all else fails, you can’t go wrong with a family-friendly podcast like Story Pirates or Earth Rangers.

Don’t Worry About Screen Time, Seriously 

A road trip is not the time to be concerned about limiting screen time. Consider this full permission to charge up those iPads and smartphones, download games and movies, and let your kids go to town. It’ll give you a break to drive in peace or actually take a nap if you’re in the passenger seat.

It’s OK To Slooow Down 

Vacations are all about taking a break from reality — especially when that vacation involves seeing manatees in person. So, let yourself worry less about things like “making good time.” Alone time may be an impossibility in the car, but you can still give yourself and your kiddos a quiet mental break from the chaos that is being packed in a vehicle with your whole family. Have designated headphone time for everyone to watch or listen to what they want on their own (AKA a chance for you to finally stream your fave show). Introduce your kids to classic car ride activities that don’t involve blasting Moana, like the license plate game or “I Spy.”

If you’re looking for laid-back destinations, is there anything that says “relaxation” like Florida beaches? Maybe Florida beaches with something to sip on. Collect sea glass with your kids at Matheson Hammock Park in Miami or find a spot along the 160-mile Gulf Islands National Seashore in Pensacola to soak up some sun. Want less-stressful alternatives to bustling theme parks? Attractions like Flamingo Gardens and Dinosaur World are both affordable, fun, and more low-key. What I’m saying is, you’ve got options if you’re headed to Florida and your goal is “FOR THE LOVE OF MY OWN SANITY, RELAX.” 

Treat The Car Ride As A Mini-Vacation Before The Vacation

I know, I know — it seems impossible, but hear me out. Remember road tripping with your family as a kid? The smallest things were exciting: driving out of your neighborhood, being in the car super early or super late, staring at strangers on the highway. Treat the car trip as its own special part of the vacation, even if it’s just letting your kids stay in their PJs past noon or letting them pick out a weird gas station treat.

You planned this vacation to spend time together. So just enjoy that time, even if part of it’s spent stuck in a car. Remember it’s about the journey, not the destination. Unless that destination is Florida. In which case, the destination will be a stress-free dreamscape in itself.

VISIT FLORIDA is Florida’s official travel planning source for visitors across the globe. Check out the VISIT FLORIDA website to learn more and start planning a vacation your family will be talking about for years to come.

The post How To Survive A Road Trip To Florida With Kids + Extended Family appeared first on Scary Mommy.

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Source: Scary Mommy https://www.scarymommy.com/how-to-survive-a-road-trip-to-florida-with-kids-extended-family/

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