Summer means family travel and for busy Moms that can mean you are on a road trip more weekends than not. From travel youth sports schedules that seem to last all summer long (can I get an amen?) to impromptu weekend getaways, there are countless reasons to load up the van and go. And for some families it might just be that first magical visit to Walt Disney World that makes a road trip so important for making memories that last a lifetime. In 2011 I had the chance to review the 2012 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite as we took a family road trip from North Carolina to Florida for The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. While it had been years since I personally owned a van, I fell in love with all the cargo options and of course, gathered a few organized tips to help you pack your family van the next time you hit the road. Check them out!
Contain your Cargo
Make the most of designated cargo space to keep as many bags out of the seating area as you can. Because a road trip can often include multiple days of driving, you may very likely have a one night stop to break up the trip for everyone’s peace and happiness. Pack a special overnight bag that includes each family member’s pajamas, outfits for the next day, and toiletries to keep unpacking to a minimum for that short one night stay.
Arrange for Activities
We live in a digital age and while I hate to admit it, well time use of on the go media can make all the difference to keep the peace. When you plan your vacation and travel time, include multi-media options for everyone to enjoy like music, movies, and educational gaming to keep your kids entertained while the miles pass by. But don’t overlook the simplicity of packing favorites like crayons, paper for doodling, and a good old fashioned game of Hang Man or The United States of License Plates.
Feed your Family
Road trip or not, busy Moms know that one HUGE part of keeping the peace is making sure your kids are well rested and well fed. Pack a cooler full of refreshing snacks in individual servings along with waters in child appropriate sizes so each family member can manage on their own. Choose items that won’t stain or stick to seats and carpets and know that a well timed snack can buy you time and minimize unnecessary and costly stops.
Manage the Mess
Pack a plastic grocery bag designed to hold trash and store it in an out of the way but accessible location so you can easily corral the mess keeping your car clutter free. Pack individual wet wipes so everyone can refresh when needed and while I hope you don’t need them, its always smart to have a few large ziplock’s on hand for life’s unexpected treasures. Think car sick kids or untimely bathroom breaks ~ you get the picture.
I grew up a child of a parents who to this day are always up for a long car trip to anywhere. I love the sound of the wheels on the road, the curiosity of exploring new places, and the excitement and fun that surely awaits us upon our arrival. As a Mom, vacation can also be work so I’m all about laying the foundation to start off streamlined and well organized so my time spent taking care of the chaos is limited and instead, I’m able to soak in the fun. Making sure my car is well organized to handle buy people is where that fun begins. Tell me…
How do you organize your van for a family road trip?
If you love Pinterest, check out our FamilyTravel and Disney Tips boards for all kinds of ideas to help you organize and plan your next adventure. There’s no better time than the present to make memories so get in the car and go! Thanks so much for stopping by ~ we’ll see you next time!
Disclosure: Special thanks to American Honda Corporation for sponsoring our road trip to the 2011 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. My opinions about the vehicle and tips for organized travel are entirely my own.