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To make a 3+hour journey on Christmas day (I know Iabu for mentioning Christmas in July so don't read if this angers you!)

(77 Posts)
Drivinghomeforchristmasornot Sun 19-Jul-15 18:27:54

Have been invited to a relatives for Christmas. Would like to go and see family but kids would rather wake up in our house on Christmas day.

Dh and I agree that it could feel a bit flat to just have us and kids for the rest of the day though (we usually spend it with relatives)

So I have suggested that after early mornjng stocking opening, a bit of breakfast and a few bigger presents we could get in the car (ready packed) at about 10am with a couple of DVDs and hot chocolates and Hopefully be with relatives in time for lunch at about 1.

My thinking is that the roads will be quiet, kids can have a bit of downtime before an exciting couple of days and we get the best of both worlds of waking up at home but seeing family.

Concerns are that they won't get much time to actually play with new toys, I guess there could be unforeseen travel delays and it just seems a bit wrong to spend 3+ hours of christmas day in the car.

Any thoughts?

Yarp Sun 19-Jul-15 18:31:59

How old are the children?

Could you stay overnight?

It sounds fine to me

Travel on Xmas day is normally not that bad

You could come home late and put the kids in the car in their jammies if you don't want to stay

LIZS Sun 19-Jul-15 18:33:53

We've often spent early morning at home or driven between sets of relatives. Roads are quiet so not so arduous. You can always save a few gifts for later.

Chunkymonkey79 Sun 19-Jul-15 18:34:01

If it were my family in this situation I would have christmas day to ourselves and travel boxing day.

Always like being in our house christmas morning and wouldn't waste christmas day in the car that long.

Drivinghomeforchristmasornot Sun 19-Jul-15 18:34:02

Kids are 6 & 3
Yes we would be staying for a couple of nights afterwards

LindyHemming Sun 19-Jul-15 18:34:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

grumpysquash Sun 19-Jul-15 18:34:04

Sounds completely fine to me. I would rather do that than travel on Christmas Eve. (Also then you don't have the issue to having to transport all the presents there, and then back again....)

tumbletumble Sun 19-Jul-15 18:36:30

I think this sounds fine. We often do this - a shorter journey, but otherwise the same.

LaLyra Sun 19-Jul-15 18:37:55

Sounds alright to me. I'd just have a back up plan in case of the weather being bad and some presents of toys/a game that could be played with in the car.

How old are the kids? Are they old enough to chose?

DoeEyedNear Sun 19-Jul-15 18:40:27

The roads are busier than you think they will be over Christmas eve/day/boxing day. I'd stop from Christmas eve personally

RagstheInvincible Sun 19-Jul-15 18:41:09

Just remember Xmas Day is the one day of the year the RAC and AA don't work. If you break down you're in trouble. Aside from that, why not.

carrie74 Sun 19-Jul-15 18:43:24

We did this one year, and I vowed never to do it again. It was fine, it was lovely being with everyone, BUT I really resented getting in the car and driving 3 hours on Xmas Day (and roads were empty by the way). I vowed from then on, we would be at home on Xmas Day and people could come to us, and I'd be happier travelling on other days, but while the children were little, I wanted them to have the whole of Xmas day at home from then on.

LaLyra Sun 19-Jul-15 18:45:40


JadeJaderson Sun 19-Jul-15 18:47:58

Sounds like hell to me.

I like closing the door on everyone and spending Xmas day with dh and the dc. Boxing Day is for visiting.

Xmas day is for us, putting batteries in things and building toys, a slap up lunch and a nice stroll After lunch (usually with dc's new skates/scooters/bikes etc). Then Xmas films, too much chocolate and a relaxed evening in.

NatashaRomanov Sun 19-Jul-15 18:50:33

I don't think that's true Rags
We had the AA out on Xmas day a few years ago when we broke down on the way to see family.

But. To the original poster, could you travel after Christmas lunch/dinner instead?
We've done that occasionally, out daughter is now 5, and it's a 1 hr 40 drive. It means she gets all the Xmas morning excitement, and gets a good look at her toys while I do dinner.
Then she gets a rest and doze in the car, and is ready for all the afternoon excitement and inevitable late night.

BowiesJumper Sun 19-Jul-15 18:53:05

As mentioned, the roads aren't as quiet as you'd think. Depends on the roads though! We do an hour or so on the M25 late morning on Christmas Day and there's always a fair amount of cars out! One year we got traffic because of heavy rain.
My preference would be to get there Christmas Eve myself but it's unavoidable.

Drivinghomeforchristmasornot Sun 19-Jul-15 18:53:53

Hmm-mixed views!
family have travelled to us previously and we have stayed with them when children were younger and less aware of what was going on.
I just can't imagine preparing dinner for just 4 of us! It's usually a feast with everyone mucking in with the cooking/playing with the kids.
Oldest dc is 6 and when I asked she said she wanted family to come to us but I've explained that won't happen this year as people need to take it in turns! Beyond that she just says she wants to have her stocking at home.

SoupDragon Sun 19-Jul-15 18:55:23

Just remember Xmas Day is the one day of the year the RAC and AA don't work. If you break down you're in trouble. Aside from that, why not.

Not true.

totallybewildered Sun 19-Jul-15 18:57:36

can't see what the big deal is

SoupDragon Sun 19-Jul-15 18:58:32

We've always been at family homes for Christmas, usually travelling on Christmas Eve. The kids love it.

ImperialBlether Sun 19-Jul-15 19:00:26

Rags, the AA website says:

Christmas Day working

Although it's the quietest day of the year by far for traffic and breakdowns, AA patrols across the country volunteer to work on Christmas Day to rescue those in trouble.

Last year, they came to the aid of more than 3,400 members on Christmas Day; and this year, around 450 patrols and 215 call handlers (including 35 home-workers) and operational employees will work in shifts on Christmas Day. The AA will also have further patrols and its 'storm-chasing' Land Rovers on standby ready to forgo Christmas festivities if required.

Patrols who work on Christmas Day are paid a premium rate and their colleagues at the AA's operational centre at Oldbury, West Midlands, get provided with a Christmas buffet.

GentlyGentlyOhDear Sun 19-Jul-15 19:01:43

I'd go up on boxing day. I enjoy Christmas Day with our little family - so chilled and calm. I wouldn't want to waste 3 hours in the car when the kids can be playing and enjoying their toys.

AGrinWithoutACat Sun 19-Jul-15 19:02:02

Not unreasonable at all, we did this a few years ago (2 hour journey) during a bad winter - think the car registered -17 on the drive.

It was magical, quiet chilled wake up with stockings and a nice breakfast, load up car, with portable DVD player for entertainment, drive through a winter wonderland.

Loads of excitement at PILs as it was like a double Christmas for the kids and arrived with plenty of time for a glass of wine before dinner. We stayed over night no rush to get home

Babyroobs Sun 19-Jul-15 19:09:12

Yes I would definately do it, it sounds lovely to visit realtives for Christmas day. It is one thing I hate about Christmas that I have to work Christmas day and/ or Boxing day every year and we can never visit relatives . It is something that really saddens me.

CalebWomble Sun 19-Jul-15 19:14:26

We've done that, 3 1/2-4 hour journey. Worked really well, we had stockings and a nice breakfast and then headed off. Christmas music on the way, crossed the Severn and gave the person on the toll booth a Christmas card with a fiver in, arrived to a lovely meal without having had to do anything for it!

The only downside was that the weather had been bad beforehand and we were a bit worried that we wouldn't actually be able to go and had no food in the house!

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