I’m in a bunch of Mom’s groups on Facebook and I see this question


So what do you bring on road trips for your little ones to keep them occupied?!?

We have been on several successful, LONG road trips so I decided to make a list of everything we use to keep our little ones occupied.

Bags, Bags, Bags

Each kiddo gets their own bag that will stay in the backseat with them within easy reach.   When I am packing the car bags, I try to keep them hidden. We all know once they play with it at home, the excitement of it will wear off quick.  We also have a separate bag that holds all the DVD’s, a snack bag, and a cooler bag. I know, I know- It sounds like a lot of bags. But trust me- It’s much easier to have more bags and know exactly where everything is.

Portable DVD Players/I-pads

So let’s be real, kiddos LOVE technology. And if you’re going to spoil them with a little tv, a long car ride is the time to do it.  Our kiddos (4 & 7) only get about a ½ of tv/I-pad time a day, so they tend to get a little excited for long car ride because they know the portable DVD players will also be making the trip. We usually bring them if we will be in the car over two hours.  Each child has one, along with their own set of headphones. They each pick out a few dvd’s and have a special bag just for the dvd’s so they’re easy to find.

If Traveling by Plane- Ipads and Netflix will be your best friend

 You can download shows so no wi-fi is necessary. Simply let them pick some shows to download and make sure you are all charged up!  Luckily we have two I-pads so each kiddo will be able to watch their own. I also do this when hubby and I are traveling without kiddos for that time we’re waiting around in the airport, or on the plane.


My girlie (7 years old) is big into coloring so I always make sure to pack a few coloring books for her  (Dollar store is great for these), along with a zip lock bag of crayons. Recently I have also been getting a thin binder, adding hole punched white paper and adding a cute little cover page with her name.  This way the cover is hard so she has something to lean on while coloring.

My little guy (4 years old) doesn’t like coloring quite as much but I usually pack a few of the No Mess Coloring books and they definitely keep him occupied for a little while.


So I usually pick up a few new books that my kiddos will read while on the road.  I think about whatever they’re interested in (trains, paw patrol, barbies, hatchimals) and find those books and keep them hidden until we leave.  This way they haven’t looked at them and they will spend a lot more time looking through them. I also throw in a few of their favorite books. It’s also great that my girlie is a great reader, so I can sometimes convince her to read her little brother a book or two.   

I also love the Me Readers, where each set comes with a reader and books and all the kids have to do is press a button for each page and it is read aloud to them.  Books are also necessary for us because our usually bedtime includes story time, so we need to bring books along anyway.

*Make sure to check out my post on Where to Get Kids Books at a Great Price.

Check Dollar Store or Dollar Spot

Every time we’re going on a long car trip I will hit the Dollar Store or the Dollar Spot at Target to see if there is anything I think the kids will like.  Sometimes the things I get there are the things they will play with for the longest! Play dinosaurs, a magic wand, post-it notes, packs of stickers and notebooks are just some of the things I have picked up that have been a hit.  Get a couple things and cross your fingers!

Snacks- Lots of snacks

So let’s be real, kids love to snack (I mean really who doesn’t?!?) so on long car trips I always pack a separate bag that has snacks that everyone will like.  Most of them are prepackaged crackers, raisins, granola bars, applesauce squeeze pouches, etc. I also include fresh fruit- easy peel clementines, apples, Tupperware with blueberries, strawberries.  I put these in a cooler bag along with a bunch of water bottle and a zip lock bag of ice. This saves tons of money because we’re not constantly buying stuff on the road. It also gives us some things to have when we are at hotel if we can’t get to the store right away.

What are your favorite things to bring on a road trip with the kiddos????

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