Making sure that your little ones are all set for your trip is probably one of your biggest concerns. The safety of children should always come on top of the to-do list for traveling. Why should you constantly overthink whether your kids will be okay when you can simply prepare in advance?
Safety Tips While Traveling with Kids in the Car
The following tips will teach you some basic steps you need to take to ensure a safe trip for your family. So, let’s get started.
Use a Car Seat
Make sure that you have an appropriate car seat no matter where you go. Until your kids reach the weight and height set by the car seat manufacturer, the car seat is a necessity.
A rear-facing car seat is the safest choice for infants and toddlers. When the kids outgrow the rear-facing height and weight, buy or rent a forward-facing convertible seat or forward-facing seat with a harness. Even if you have school-aged children you might still need a belt-positioning booster seat if the car’s seat belt doesn’t fit properly.
Place the Rear-facing Car Only in the Back
Placing the rear-facing car seat in the front can end up really badly. Some think that it will just be a moment while they switch from one location to another. The thing is that even a 15-minute drive with a rear-facing seat in the front can lead to a disaster.
If the airbag opens while with the car seat in the front seat, the child can be seriously injured. At all times keep the car seat safely in the back seat.
Don’t Share a Seatbelt
The kids might think it will be fun if they share a seatbelt. Especially if they are still very young and two of them can fit under the same one. Dismiss this idea as soon as possible.
The seatbelt is designed for the safety of one person and one person only. Don't let the kids buckle up under the same seatbelt no matter how interesting they find it to be.
Younger Kids Must Ride in the Backseat
The age limit for kids who shouldn't sit in the front seat is under 13. The Centers for Disease Control and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommend always keeping children under age 13 in the back seat. Teach the kids that they aren’t allowed to ride in the front seat until they are old enough. Especially, for longer journeys.
This limit exists for a valid reason. Passenger-side airbags are designed to protect people with bigger bodies. Children’s bodies are small and fragile and can be seriously injured if the airbag gets activated.
Pack Their Favorite Snacks
We all know that kids can be very picky about food. Unless you've traveled on the same road multiple times, you never know what type of restaurants you will come across. You might be okay with eating anything just to get rid of the hunger, but the kid's think differently. Pack some of their favorite snacks so you won't have to stress about what the kids will eat.
Donna Hayes, an editor at PickWriters shared why packing snacks is essential for her family trips. “Whenever I’m going on a longer trip with my kids, I have to pack them some snacks. I’ve learned the hard way that there is no power in the world that will make my kids eat something they don’t like, even on the road. I prepare something nutritious and compact so I don’t have to worry about whether my kids will end up hungry,” says Donna.
No Yelling and Fighting
If you have more than one kid keeping them calm can be a demanding task. Getting your kids to spend a longer time in the car together will probably end up in at least one bickering situation. While bickering can be tolerated to some extent, you should stress to the kids that there can be no yelling and fighting in the car.
When the situation escalates and the children start to fight in the car, the driver can get distracted and everyone can be put at risk. Not to mention that a child can kick the driver’s seat and interrupt the driving. Explain to the kids that it is up to them to keep their family safe by not fighting in the car.
Prepare Fun Car Games
To prevent the previously mentioned fights and bickering, keep the kids occupied during the trip. Sitting in the back, just looking at the window is boring for the kids. Keep them off the phone and work on your family bond by playing car games.
Prepare your favorite tunes for a sng-along, invent your own games, or play the already popular ones. For example, 20 questions is a fun game that everyone loves. One of you should think of something and tell the category (person, place, or a thing) and others have 20 questions to guess what it is. These games will keep the kids entertained and calm.
Safely Store Medications and Chemicals
The kids are likely to play wih and experiment with anything they can put their hands on. You’re might not able to control their nature but you can control their surroundings. Those of you who are carrying any type of medications or chemicals such as cleaning supplies, store them in a safe place.
Ensure that the kids can’t easily get a hold of them. Putting them in the glove department might not be the best idea. The kids can easily explore what you have in there while you are taking a break.
Never Leave Them Alone in the Car
There is no situation in which leaving your kid alone in the car is safe. They can unlock the car and run away within minutes. The riskiest situation is when the weather is hot.
Did you know that heatstroke is the leading cause of non-crash, car-related deaths in children under 15? The car can heat up to 20 degrees F in just 10 minutes and a child's body heats up 3 to 5 times faster than an adult's. Better take more time to handle some obligations than to put the kids at risk.
Traveling with kids can seem like a challenging journey, but it’s all about being prepared. You won’t have to stress about your kids’ safety if you take the precaution. Your awareness will still have to be present, however, you will know that you have taken all the necessary steps to ensure that your kids are safe.
Donating Your Car
When you're ready to upgrade your family vehicle, consider donating your used one to charity. Cars2Charities fundraises for your favorite local charities, nationwide. The best part? Cars2Charities lets the donor chose which charity they want their proceeds to go to. Simply go online or call (855) 520-2100 to speak to a friendly car donation expert who will assist you in scheduling your vehicle donation pick up.
Elisa Abbot is a writer and content marketer at BestWritersOnline. She aims to provide excellent quality content to her readers and clients. In her free time, she loves watching movies in different languages and traveling to various destinations abroad.