4 Ways To Make Your Family Ride More Kid-Friendly

During the school year, families spend more time in their cars. An October 2017 survey by GM BuyPower Card, which offers unlimited earnings that don’t expire on the purchase or lease of a new GM vehicle, asked parents about life on the road and they provided some interesting answers.

For example, one-third (35 percent) of respondents said they think of their car as a second home. That means eating, watching movies, studying and sleeping while on the road or while parked on the school lot waiting for your kid to run out of class.Here are ways to accessorize your car so that chauffeuring yourkids goes smoothly.

Get a tray table

Whether you’re transporting a toddler to daycare or you’ve got a teenager studying for an exam, get a tray table in the back seat (if your vehicle supports it). The same survey revealed that two-thirds(68 percent) of kids eat snacks inside the vehicle, and over 20 percent do their homework. A tray table is an ergonomic way for children to browse an iPad, listen to an audiobook, or fill in a coloring book. When they’re busy, you can concentrate on driving.

Bring pillows

The GM BuyPower Card survey showed that 49 percent of children take naps in the car. Therefore, it’s best to bring pillows, especially on long drives to and from school. This is perhaps the simplest, yet the most beneficial, item you can bring in your ride.

A pillow prevents neck cramps and ensures better rest for the active child — or stressed adult. Similarly, you can buytravel pillows for kids and adults that are designed specifically for being on the go. Some are tailor-made for vehicles and attach to seatbelts or head rests.

Have some entertainment

Nearly three-fourths(73 percent)of parents said they spend more time in their cars during the school year than they do in the summer. And some spend 5 to 10 hours each week on pick-ups and drop-offs alone. Without music or video content, that’s plenty of idle time.

Most parents can attest that no one wants bored children in the back seat or innocent children who can suddenly throw tantrums or cause distracted driving. It’s actually a more dangerous situation than many drivers realize. Thus, it makes sense to bring portable entertainment such as tablets, audiobooks and movies to prevent a mini-riot inside a confined space. Fortunately, video devices for vehicles are getting cheaper, and these can be installed on the back of head rests.

Bring small storage boxes

Three-fourths(73 percent) of parents surveyed said that their number one pet peeve about cars is that they’re often dirty. But kids and messes are just a fact of life.

So get organized with small boxes and/or trash bags before the junk transforms your passenger seats into mini-landfills. It’s a simple way to manage chaos. And in some situations, it actually makes your car rides safer by ensuring your kids’ friends don’t get poked by sharp pencils, wiped with super glue or get exposed to countless other hazards on their way to school.

All these accessories cost some money, but they also lessen risk, improve your quality of life and perhaps restore your sanity while on the road during the school year.