What to Pack on a Roadtrip with Kids

What to pack on a road trip with kids

As the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration at Walt Disney World is fast approaching, I’ve been making notes and lists getting prepared. One thing that’s been weighing on my mind is the twenty-something hour car ride and keeping the two littles busy enough to not completely drive us crazy.  (Our kids are ages 5 and 1, so your list might be different for older kids).

Given the fact that we’ve recently done a couple of 14 hour trips, I’m hopeful that we’ll survive. Just to be sure, I’ve made a list.

Essentials for a Road Trip with Small Children

For my own sanity

  • Travel itinerary with route, hotel accommodation info and restaurant/ rest stop ideas
  • Sunglasses (I have accidentally left these before! D’oh!)
  • Purse with only the essentials(credit cards, health and auto insurance, AAA membership card)
  • Cash/ change for tolls, parking and tips
  • Audio books
  • Books and magazines (for when I’m not the one driving)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Small bags for trash


  • iPhone and charger plus the adapter to be able to charge the phone in the car
  • Laptop and charger
  • Kindle or other e-reader
  • Earbuds
  • Book light
  • DVD player with movies in a zippered case
  • CD player with kid-sized headphones
  • Audio and read-along books

Road trip activities box

  • Binder full of stuff to do- paper, markers, window markers, stickers, crayons, coloring books and word worksheets
  • Kids’ Atlas
  • Lap tray to color and draw on as well as to balance DVD player
  • New thing to pull out, particularly helpful towards the end of the day when we’re all a little fried or for day two of the drive- I have a new book and a new DVD packed away  for this purpose

Snacks (dry and in the cooler)

  • Granola bars
  • Nutella snack packs (maybe I should have put these in the “my sanity” column)
  • Dried fruit and trail mix
  • Apples, bananas, grapes
  • Carrot sticks with ranch dressing
  • Sandwich meat, cheese, tortillas and bread for meals on the go
  • Cheese sticks
  • Yogurt tubes
  • Bottled water

Creature comforts

  • Pillows
  • Blankets

Necessities for potential yuckies (we’ve had this happen several times before!)

  • Motion sickness medicine
  • Paper towels
  • Clorox wipes
  • Plastic trash bags

Here’s a printable Road Trip with Kids Checklist I made for you to use. Is there anything I’ve missed that is imperative to your road-tripping with kids? Please leave me a comment!


Disney Social Media Moms

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  1. Mary Foster says:

    I love it, Shanna. So impressed with your books and everything else you are doing, and so proud of that wonderful man you married! Hope you all have a wonderful time at Walt Disney World. Give the DH a hug and kiss from his Aunt Mary! And the girls from their great aunt!!!

  2. Enjoy your road trip!! I hated the fact that I had to turn down Disney SMMoms this year – that was a very difficult email to write.

    This is a fabulous list! The activity box is a wonderful idea! We like to stop along the way and go into local Walgreens stores or dollar stores and add to the box as we go 🙂

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