Preserving Your Sanity on the Road

According to AAA, gas prices are likely to increase to record highs just in time for the Memorial Day weekend. Currently, I am paying $4 a gallon here in Wisconsin. In Hawaii, my parents have been shelling out more than five bucks a gallon for nearly a month.

Will the price of gas influence your summer travel plans?

If you already committed to driving to grandma’s house for Memorial Day, then you will likely have to suck it up despite the sky-high gas prices. However, there are other ways you can preserve your sanity while on the highway. If you are driving with kids the last thing you need to contend with while you are mulling over the damage your road trip is doing to your checking account is a chorus of “Are we there yet?” coming from the backseat.

When the handheld video games get old and the DVD machine breaks down, consider these tried and true car games to keep the kiddos quiet:


You can create your own cards or print out online versions of travel bingo which feature items that can be viewed from a window, such as a dog, cow, bridge, bug, airplane, school, water tower, or a license plate with the letter “M” on it. Give each kid a card, and then call out the items in random order. The person who fills his bingo card first wins.

Another version of this game is magnetic bingo. It features traditional bingo cards, but includes nifty magnetic disks that allow passengers to play the game in a moving vehicle without worrying about losing pieces. The caller picks numbered and lettered balls from a bag and calls them out during play. The first person to complete a bingo pattern wins.

Name Game

If you are traveling with young children you can adapt this popular game so they can play too. Pick a topic, such as names of characters on kids’ shows or titles of movies or TV shows. The first person says a name, such as “Charlie Brown.” The next player must use the first letter of the character’s last name, in this case, “B,” to come up with another name, such as “Baby Bear.” Start at the front of the vehicle and work your way back or you can start with the youngest member of the family and work your way to the oldest.

Related Articles:

Even More Tips To Remember When You Travel With Kids

More Tips To Remember When You Travel With Kids

Traveling With Young Children: More Dos and Don’ts

Traveling With Young Children: Dos and Don’ts

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.