Advanced search

To want help for an 8 hour drive with toddler

(41 Posts)
EasterRobin Sun 16-Oct-16 17:54:16

Oh lawks! What have I let myself in for? I'm visiting my parents 8 hours away so DD (20 months) can have a few days with her grandparents. Then another 8 hours drive back.

How do I do this?

SortAllTheThings Sun 16-Oct-16 17:56:23

Split it in half and do an overnight stay around half way?

Sparklesilverglitter Sun 16-Oct-16 17:56:33

You could stop every 2 hours give the DC a snack and a little walk around

Get a portable DVD player/iPad and use in the cat let them watch something

It will be fine

jelliebelly Sun 16-Oct-16 17:57:40

Don't do it all in one go - stop half way overnight

Coffeechocolatecake Sun 16-Oct-16 17:58:50

With my DC we stop every couple of hours me and dh have a coffee and baby has a drink and we have some biscuits or something, quick walk around.

I let them watch a favourite tv programme in the back

We've just got back from a 6 hour drive, with 4 DC youngest being 10 months and all was fine

chitofftheshovel Sun 16-Oct-16 17:59:22

Go overnight. Toddler will sleep and roads are quiet.

Jclm Sun 16-Oct-16 17:59:58

I do a similar journey, alone, each half term, with two little children. I usually book a premier inn both ways. Expensive but takes the pressure off me. Also we stop every two hours and I have the route and stops planned. I also take new toys, sweets and treats and also have a plan for if motorway has delays. I've got more confident as time has gone on but it is still very stressful and it takes me a week to plan and a week to recover!!!

Msqueen33 Sun 16-Oct-16 18:00:41

It'll be fine. Me and my dad drove to Spain. It took a little over 12 hours with three kids (7,6 and 4) Younger two are autism so not the easiest. We stopped half way over night. Next time we'd take in car dvds but it was okay.

Iloveyouvodka Sun 16-Oct-16 18:01:51

I personally find it better to do it in one go than stay over night half way.

We stop for snacks and a walk around

Youngest child has Thomas/pepper pig/teletubbies on an iPad in the back.

We went to Cornwall last weekend 7 hours each way. It was absolutely fine

Ohyesiam Sun 16-Oct-16 18:06:16

I one drive through the night to Scotland to avoid doing it with an awake toddler. Worked well, but time time consuming as you have to catch up on sleep.

Cakescakescakes Sun 16-Oct-16 18:06:22

Could you leave around 4pm and drive for a couple of hours then stop, give DD dinner, run around, then into jammies and back in the car then drive and hopefully she'll sleep as if it's bedtime. You could have a drive through coffee stop later and do the remaining 6 hrs in 2-3 bursts?

EasterRobin Sun 16-Oct-16 18:10:34

I should mention DP can't come so it'll be just me and DD in the car.

thanksamillion Sun 16-Oct-16 18:11:13

Is there something like a national trust property or large park near the route? If so I would say set off early, stop for a good length of time (run around, food etc etc) then do the rest of the journey late afternoon.

We did a lot of very long journeys when our DC were younger (lived in Europe and drove home to UK) and 8 hours in a day was about the max that we could tolerate.

EasterRobin Sun 16-Oct-16 18:12:17

Your replies are giving me a lot more confidence that I can do this. :-)

blueturtle6 Sun 16-Oct-16 18:16:19

Do it at night, we did an late night when it was really hot and was by far the best way, however it took me two hours to get her to bed the other end so make sure help available as you'll be tired from driving

OttosTitsling Sun 16-Oct-16 18:19:16

We do this quite a lot. We found it easiest to get a stupidly early start, like 4am, and at least the DC will sleep for the first few hours. Then it's a stop for breakfast and stretch legs, dvd on for the next stretch, quick stop for bathroom break and coffee for us, then the home stretch.

It's surprisingly do-able although mind numbingly boring.

NattyTile Sun 16-Oct-16 18:24:01

Yep like a pp, start stupidly early. You've had sleep then, they'll sleep in the car, and you can stop for a long coffee laden breakfast. Then decent run around in a park.

Just time your departure so you are avoiding major hideous roads around rush hour.

Iguessyourestuckwithme Sun 16-Oct-16 18:25:06

I would probably set off about 10 and drive for an hour or so then stop for lunch and back into the car about 12.30 then drive while she has her nap. When she wakes drive as long as you can before she gets restless and stop for a snack about 4ish and a run around somewhere playground then back in the car with some time to watch the Ipad etc. Can you meet grandparents an hour from there's for dinner around 6ish then head onwards for the last 40 minutes with her ready for bed or in their car

RumbleMum Sun 16-Oct-16 18:28:53

I'd also split it into two days. I regularly do 4 hours to my parents with two DC and have done since they were young. Having a portable DVD player/iPad with lots of films and TV programmes has been a life saver for me. I also used to set off about an hour before naptime because then they'd be getting tired and sit quietly watching films for an hour or two before finally falling asleep.

Artandco Sun 16-Oct-16 18:33:18

I would go early personally, avoid arriving late when it's dark and your tired.

Child straight out of bed, toilet and into car at 6am. Give blanket. Hopefully they go back to sleep.

Then drive until 9am allowing you to get onto motorway quickly as little traffic. Stop for breakfast and walk around. Then drive another 2 1/2 hours, stop for lunch. Then only 2 1/2 hrs left

Never use DVD in car. Stops them sleeping from Bordem and more likely they throw up from car sickness

Artandco Sun 16-Oct-16 18:34:11

Oh and take food in the car, service station food not usually great and requires more time queing up

liquidrevolution Sun 16-Oct-16 18:35:40

I do 4,5 hrs in one go to my parents with DD asleep in the back of the car as we set off at her bedtime. Also the 6 hr journey is takes much less time as no break and no traffic.

I make sure I havent drunk any tea before I set off to prevent impromptu pit stops (have done one emergency dash). She even transfers to her bed at my parents without waking.

My DD is 27 months and I find forward facing her means I can deal with any issues quicker as I can see her in my visor mirror.

waterrat Sun 16-Oct-16 18:37:13

Blimey is it really worth the 32 hours of driving ...or are they going to Bring her back?

I prefer the get up and drive v early 4 or 5 am. Drive for a few hours. The child will sleep ....stop for breakfast for an hour and a run around. Then keep going.

Personally I couldn't do that in one go.

BikeRunSki Sun 16-Oct-16 18:39:21

I used to do Leeds to Somerset a lot with DS at that age. I used to tire him out swimming in the afternoon. Stop for a meal at a service station around 5 Ish (usually a pack up he could continue in the car). Stop again an hour or so later, and put his PJs on, do teeth, clean nappy etc. Story CD in car. He always fall asleep, I'd put my foot down and we'd plough on to my mum's. I always managed to move him into the cot without him waking much when we got there. Got much trickier once DD came along!

If you tell us roughly where you are travelling between, maybe we could suggest some stops.

Justwanttoweeinpeace Sun 16-Oct-16 18:42:22

It'll be fine. Invest in a back seat holder for your iPad so she can watch movies.

Snacks, especially yummy ones / special occasion ones.

Go over nap time or bed time - you'll get at least a few hours peace.

Some service stations have playgroups to break it up a bit.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now