Head Off the Fighting
Kelleher prevents kids’ backseat battles by giving each one his own roll of painter’s tape at the start of the trip to mark off territory. “People laugh, but it works,” she says. “They wind up creating these elaborate floor-to-ceiling walls with the tape, so it also keeps them busy for a while. And it’s easy to pull it down and wad it up at the end of the trip.”
Larsen likes to bring along each kid’s sleeping bag, which, she says, “helps them create their own personal space.” Most of the time, she says, kids (and adults) get cranky because they’re tired, hungry, or bored. When the bickering reaches a fever pitch, the best way to defuse the situation is to make good on that time-honored threat: Pull over. Let everyone (including you) get out of the car to blow off steam.
Keep boredom to a minimum with family-friendly road trip games and travel activities.