It’s Important For Your Kids to Feel Safe on Winter Road Trips

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Winter road trips present a host of challenges. Of course, the weather can be a factor, considering where you’re driving, but there are so many other elements to consider as well. Especially when you’re traveling with your family and with your children, it’s important that everyone feels safe to have a smooth and seamless road trip.


Safety is one of the basic fundamental human needs, and children are especially affected by this need. Here are the main reasons why it’s important for your kids to feel safe on winter road trips.


Safety encourages rest


When kids feel truly safe, they are able to relax and rest. In the case of road trips, this means they’re able to sleep, or just relax to a level of calmness that keeps everyone happy. Especially when you are driving long distances, it’s necessary that kids find time to sleep – and this can only really happen if they are incredibly tired, as well as if they feel safe.


So, make some preparations to make sure that your kids feel safe and comfortable. Encourage them to bring along their favorite books and toys, bring some familiar snacks, play soothing and enjoyable music. Especially for the first hour or so in the car, creating an environment of safety and support is crucial. Bring travel-friendly pillows and blankets as well (or maybe their favorite pillow or stuffed animal), so your kids feel as safe and secure as possible.  


Safety encourages happiness


When you feel safe, you are then able to experience a broad range of other emotions, including happiness. The same applies to children. While road trips, especially road trips with children, are not typically an experience that we associate with happiness, there’s no reason why your winter road trip can’t be a happy one!


Take extra steps to find the joy in embarking on a road trip as a family. Practice mindfulness and be open to making memories along the way. Safety is your primary concern, but don’t forget about happiness. Plus, if you have young children and can teach them early on that road trips are fun and something to look forward to, then this will help create a long-term positive association.


Safety creates a calm environment


There are many things you can do ahead of time to make sure your road trip goes as smoothly and calmly as possible. For example, when you plan out your route, make sure you have at least one or two backup routes in case of inclement weather and road closures. This will help prevent last-minute frustrations that can then stress all car passengers.


Another important thing to do before hitting the road is to make sure your car has been recently serviced and is fully prepared for any environmental hazards that may come up as a result of your winter road trip. Make sure that your tire pressure is sound, and that tire treads are up to par for winter conditions. Quality vehicles will set up you up for the best safety conditions, but even they need to be serviced regularly.


You should also bring necessary supplies with you: This means bringing tire chains, windshield cleaners, and even packing an emergency road kit like this one recommended by AAA just in case. Wherever you happen to be traveling, be aware of all potential winter elements that you could encounter, and prepare accordingly.


Another thing that’s important to do is not over-pack the car. This can be tough on winter road trips, especially if you are bringing along ski equipment or other winter gear, but you need to find a balance of how much stuff is “too much stuff” in your car. When you over-pack, stored items can impede on passengers’ personal space, which creates an underlying sense of annoyance and frustrations that are likely to bubble over at some point. Prevent this from happening by packing strategically, and investing in a rooftop carrier is needed to transport all your winter items safely.


When children feel safe, they are able to function, flourish and grow at their highest capacity. Prioritize safety as a fundamental need in life, and especially any time that you are traveling with your kids.

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