Skip to content

Rving with kids

RVing with your kids is a great way to spend quality time together and create memories while enjoying nature and experiencing new places as a family.

PLAN AS A FAMILY: Among the best parts about RVing are planning where to go, what to see, and the places to stay. We encourage not leaving your kids out of this important step. Don’t hesitate to ask what their ideal RV trip would look like and work together to make everyone’s dreams a reality as much as realistically possible. Getting them involved in the planning will build everyone’s excitement about the trip. There are a number of resources your family can use while planning the getaway. Start with the destination’s website. It’s good to start here to make sure you get the facts. For more detailed information and a personal perspective, research blogs and other third party websites. These will offer more details that can help ensure you’re prepared. They can even open your eyes to destinations you may not have even considered.

SHORTER TRAVEL DAYS: You may love all that comes with a good road trip, but it’s not always easiest on the passengers. Longer travel days can be uncomfortable, boring, and exhausting for kids. To keep their enthusiasm about the trip, keep travel days shorter. You’ll be thanking us later. Older kids are capable of traveling for up to eight hours in a day. For those younger children though, we wouldn’t advise you keeping them on the road anymore than three to four hours. Keeping travel days on the shorter side will keep the kids happy, let the driver get some rest, and allow the passenger to restock snacks and activities. When you’re planning your travel day, keep in mind you’ll probably be moving at a slower pace than usual. Between towing an RV and bathroom breaks, it’s best to add on 15-20 minutes for every hour given by your GPS.

BUCKLE UP: Wearing your seatbelt is probably second nature. If it’s not, it obviously should be. This isn’t necessarily the case though for many who are traveling in an RV. When traveling in the RV, kids might have the urge to move freely, which isn’t a good idea. People tend to think because an RV is large like a school bus, they’re better equipped to handle accidents so seatbelts aren’t needed. RVs aren’t built to the same high standards though, therefore, in a crash, they’re not as safe as you may think. Many RV models come with seatbelts in the living area. Some even come with anchors for car seats. When the RV is in motion, everyone should remain seated and strapped in. If you have an RV without seatbelts in the living area, think about having an adult in your party follow in another vehicle where kids can be buckled in.

BATHROOM BREAKS: If you don’t think through a plan for bathroom breaks, they’re bound to add a lot more time to your travel days with kids. Before leaving, pick out places for planned bathroom breaks. When you make these scheduled stops, ensure everyone at least tries to go. You don’t want to be in a situation where you just can’t back on the road only to have someone need to go shortly thereafter. Look for rest stops and large travel center gas stations for bathroom breaks. They make it easy for RVs to maneuver and park.

ENCLOSED BUNKROOM: It’s no secret there’s limited space in an RV. One with a separate bunkroom is a layout that makes it feel bigger and gives everyone space. Depending on the RV, bunkrooms typically sit in the back or middle between the master bedroom and living space and can accommodate two to four kids. A bunkroom means kids have a place to play while inside. It also means adults get some space once they’re in bed for the night. A separate bunkroom with a door that closes is a must if adults plan on having their own time and getting any actual rest.

SOUND MACHINE: A sound machine is a great way to ensure you get your proper rest. If the adults want to stay up late without waking up the kids, a sound machine can drown out the noise in another room. It also blocks noise coming from outside the camper.

DOWNTIME: While the purpose of taking an RV trip with the kids might be to explore new places, don’t forget to take some time to let everyone recharge. The last thing you want is an overtired or burned out child. Make sure to spend time in between adventures to relax and have fun at the RV. Some of your fondest memories will ultimately be made sitting there.

OUTDOOR PLAY AREA: During these downtime moments, you also want to avoid boredom setting in. We’d suggest creating an outdoor play area for the kids. A large outdoor mat makes for a great play space. It’s perfect for a wide variety of toys and keeps everything and everyone clean. You can also expand beyond that, and set up outdoor games for the whole family.

INDOOR ENTERTAINMENT: The job doesn’t end with just at outdoor space. While we’re sure you want to spend as much time as possible outside, weather obviously doesn’t always allow for that so be prepared to have things to do inside too. Easily storable items that don’t take up much space like board games, cards, and books are easy ways to add countless hours of entertainment in your RV. Then there’s also always the option of watching a movie too. Most RVs are fully equipped to watch a DVD or even stream from your phone so this shouldn’t be a problem.

HAVE FUN: No matter how long your travel days are, remember to have fun while exploring all these new places. A positive attitude goes a long way. RVing with kids can be challenging at times, but even the hard parts are a part of the adventures. When something goes wrong, all you can do is try to get through it as a family. These situations can make for the best bonding opportunities and create lasting memories. Don’t make the mistake of taking anything too seriously especially the small stuff. Show your kids camping is fun and something they should want to do again. Be grateful for the chance to experience this adventure with your family.