You and your family deserve a vacation. Research shows doing so can be lifesaving, reducing your risk of heart and metabolic diseases and improving brain power and productivity. Rest is so necessary that those who work 55 hours a week or more run a 35% higher risk of adverse cardiovascular events like strokes.
“But,” you protest, “the economy.” You have a valid point, as inflation is at an all-time high and many people struggled to get by before prices went crazy.
Why not consider a road trip? It might be the ultimate way to treat your loved ones to the break they deserve. Here are five reasons why road trips are great for big families.
1. You Can Save Money
If you have two or more children, jamming everyone into one hotel room is a bear, even if you drive to your destination. If you and your partner hope to have solo R&R time, you must rent a separate room, doubling your price. That can mean cutting your vacation short or not going at all, thanks to the expense.
However, road trips are great for big families because you can get a rolling hotel room by renting an RV. Doing so is superior in many ways. For one, it’s less expensive — rates average $150 to $200 a night. You can also save money by cooking in the camper instead of going out and your kids might be far less restless with ample room to stretch their legs while in transit.
Depending on your destination, you might not have to pay to park. While commercial campsites offer amenities, they also charge fees. However, you can still find beautiful free grounds, especially out west. Explore the aspens of northern Arizona or see the giant redwoods in Oregon without spending a dime to park your ride.
2. You’ll Experience More Destinations
The typical family vacation to Disney gets you oodles of fun. However, you don’t see much of the country besides a costumed mouse. There’s so much more in America to explore.
A road trip holiday gives you ample time to seek various destinations. One of the benefits of east coast living is the relatively small state size. You could tour Maine lighthouses one day, Boston the second, New York the third and Gettysburg the fourth — all with plenty of energy left from driving to explore. You’ll even have time to swing by the nation’s capital on day five if you get ambitious.
Out west is no less scenic. Traveling from Yuma to Flagstaff, AZ, traverses three different climate zones, all with unique landscapes. Are you a fan of motorized vehicles? Ride the Dunes down in Glamis and follow with the Cinders up north and your friends will think you crossed the country when they look at pictures, even though you remained in one state. You’ll see everything from miles of white sands to towering pine forests, with some incredible red rock views along the way if you stop in Sedona.
3. Everyone Gets a Turn to Do What They Love
Family vacations tend to center around the youngest members, but parents deserve a break, too. One reason road trips are great for big families is that they allow everyone to see the sites that interest them most and do what they love.
For example, if you’re a baseball fan, you probably know Cooperstown, NY, for one thing — the Baseball Hall of Fame. However, what if not everyone shares your love of the game? Fortunately, this town offers plenty of other museums and glorious outdoor spaces for those family members who don’t live for the umpire’s next call.
4. You Can Integrate Learning
The pandemic took a toll on learning outcomes, even among students with access to reliable internet and computers. While all travel offers some educational benefits, you can get even more reinforcement on a road trip — all without making your kids feel like they never left school.
For example, you can add a fun twist to the classic “I Spy” game by asking your kiddos to tell you what they know about each landmark they identify. Pass the time on the road with round-robin storytelling — one person starts the tale, then the next person picks up where they ended. This activity inspires creativity. Going camping? Review critical safety rules by playing the “I am going camping” game.
5. You Can Bring Pets
It’s the day before your big vacation and your child is having an anxiety attack over their beloved pup. Why? They just watched “Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey.”
Your little one won’t have to worry if you take a road trip because you don’t have to find a friendly relative or boarding facility to watch your beloved pup. You can bring Fido with you — doing so can keep the kids occupied while giving you peace of mind that your fur family is well provided for during your trek.
Take a Road Trip With Your Big Family
You deserve a vacation — it’s necessary for your health. However, you aren’t alone if inflation’s pinch has cut into your travel dollar.
Why not pack up the family truckster? Road trips are great for big families for all of the above reasons.