Get all passengers involved during the planning stage—yes, that means the small fry, too. “When parents say, ‘We’re going to drive from Chicago to San Francisco,’ kids can get stressed-out, because they don’t know what to expect,” says Elizabeth Foy Larsen, a mom of three and a coauthor of Unbored: The Essential Field Guide to Serious Fun ($25, amazon.com).
Before long trips, Larsen’s family sits down with a map to discuss which cities might make good overnight stops. Each person gets to pick an attraction that he or she would like to visit along the route. That way, everybody has something to look forward to.