Summer vacation may be long gone, but that doesn’t mean you can’t prepare for another family road trip. If you love hitting the open road for new adventures with your loved ones, consider the following DIY hacks to make sure your minivan is road-trip ready:
Know How to Pack the Car
You know the frustration of putting suitcase after suitcase in the back of your minivan only to find that the door won’t shut. Spend some time looking over the dimensions of your van to pick the best luggage for your trip. For example, if you have the latest Chrysler Pacifica, you have 32 cubic feet of cargo to work with. The Pacifica also has up to 3,600 towing capacity, so keep that in mind if you need to pack heavy items like a grill, coolers or camping equipment.
While you always should have an emergency roadside kit in the car, this is especially important for road trips. Make sure to save some room for a first aid kit, blankets, water and any other emergency equipment you need for your van. You also should know how to get help if you break down or have an emergency situation.
Stock Up on Snacks
You can’t have a road trip without snacks. Your kids are bound to get hungry (even if you just stopped for lunch), and it can make the road trip feel fun and special. To make sure your minivan is ready for a road trip, keep snack pouches on hand for every member of the family. You can use these to easily divide everyone’s favorite treats and avoid fights over who ate the last granola bar.
With a minivan you also have some extra room in between the second row of seats, making it the perfect place to install a cooler. Have ice packs ready to go at all times so you can throw in fruit, chocolate, water, soda and anything else that might melt in the sun during a long day of driving.
Bring Plenty of Entertainment
Nothing will ruin a road trip like boredom. If you can’t take another moment of your kids asking “are we there yet?” or “how much longer?” you need to come prepared with plenty of entertainment. Many new minivans come with individual screens on the back of the front seats so your kids can watch movies or play games as long as they hold their attention. If they don’t come built-in, keep tablet mounts stored in the seat pockets at all times. You also should have chargers and extra batteries stored in the front console. Having portable tablets is convenient if you have to make pitstops or sleep in hotel rooms.
Keep a deck of cards, travel games and road trip questions in your van so you’re prepared with something new to entertain your family at a moment’s notice. Use this time to bond with your kids and learn more about them. For example, you can have a list of serious and silly questions for everyone in the family to answer while you’re driving. You also can watch home movies or use the time to plan where you want to stop while you’re driving and activities you want to do during your vacation.
Road trips can be fun and exciting for every member of the family with just a little bit of preparation. With your luggage, snacks and entertainment in tow, you’ll be ready to hit the road whenever the mood hits you.