To not want to drive this far?(191 Posts)
MIL lives over 200 miles from us and it usually takes 6+ hours to get there when we visit once you factor in traffic, breaks for the DC (and us). We generally go there maybe once a year and the rest of the time she comes to us on the train (she doesn't drive) which is about a 3 hour trip.
She is turning 70 this summer and wants to have a big party, she's booked the date and wants us to go. Fine, except it's the Saturday before we go on our family holiday which was booked in December, long before we knew about the party. We leave for our holiday on the Tuesday after the party and are driving to a site in France over 2 days, it'll be a good 10 hour journey all in.
DC are 9 and 7 and not great car travellers, between car sickness, bickering, boredom etc it's not much fun but as an occasional thing we can all muddle through. However if we all go to MILs party we will end up sitting in the car for around 24 hours in 6 days which I think is too much. I'd be ok for us to take the train up and use public transport to get around as needed as the train is easier to manage (though it's quite pricey) but DH is insistent that he wants to drive and if I don't want to I can stay home 'to prepare for the holiday'
So AIBU, would you do all that driving?
Yep it will be tiring and not ideal but perfectly doable.
Can you leave for holiday from your Mils be a shame to miss her Birthday
I would go. I know it's not much fun, but it's a big party for your mil.
I think you'd be really mean not to go. Its her 70th birthday and she wants her family around her. Its a big birthday. It wouldn't enter my head not to go!
What's another few hours in the car really, it's a big deal for your MIL so I would go. IF you really don't want to stay at home and your DH can take your kids.
Get the train with the kids, tell DH if he's driving you'll see him there! Have a look to see if you can split the tickets into singles as it's sometimes cheaper. There is a website called tickety split from money saving expert that can help you find the cheapest way of getting there.
Catch the train.
If the trip takes 6 hours to drive and 3 hours on the train why are you not always taking the train?
You have plenty of time so you can book the tickets as soon as the cheap advance fares go on sale. Register here to get an email when the advance fares become available
I'm not suggesting we don't go at all. DH won't go on his own without kids. I can sit in a car, it's the kids I'm bothered about, they are pretty energetic and hate sitting in the car. And it's more than a few hours, it's around 12.
Go ig straight from hers wouldn't make any difference as we'd still have to drive back pretty much past our house so it's the same amount of time driving.
We don't usually take train as she lives in a small village so it's easier to do day trips if we have our car. Obviously if we are just there for a weekend the only outing would be the party.
My parents live a similar distance and we usually travel in the evening so the DCs can sleep. It takes me 3.5 hours max. No need to stop and spend all day travelling.
Or as PPs have said, get the train. I'd never miss a big birthday of my or DH's parents.
Is there a back story we're not getting? I get the feeling there's more than the journey that's putting you off seeing her.
200 miles taking 6 hours? Honestly? We drive that far on a regular basis to see family and friends. I'd feed the kids and put them in pyjamas on the Friday night and set off at usual bedtime. They'll sleep in the car and the traffic shouldn't be bad. Either do it in one go or do a quick switch halfway to swap drivers. On the Sunday leave after breakfast, head to national trust/museum/swimming pool or whatever halfway home. Spend a few hour shifts there and have lunch. Head home.
Am wondering then why you have booked a holiday that entails a lot of driving to get there and back when your children hate travelling by car.
Travelling can be frought.
See it as an adventure
' Road Trip'
It's a big party and a one off.
The train can be ridiculously expensive when there is more than one of you versus driving cost.
200 miles, 6 hours?
Unless you both live off the beaten track that's ridiculous. 200 miles is a comfortable 4 hour trip including comfort stops.
No wonder your kids get fed up if you drag it out like this.
Unless your MIL is a right cow bag, then go in the car with your family. If she is a right cow then stay home.
I'd go on the train. Why is DH insistent on driving?
As for the kids. Make it as quick & painless as possible then they need to learn the 'It's not all about you' lesson in life. It's their Grandmothers 70th, I'd be very upset/angry if my children sulked about going or misbehaved in the car at their age.
I think you should go. It's you MILs 70th and she wants you all there. It is 3 days before you leave for your holiday and not impossible by any means. It would be unreasonable of you not to go - when it comes to family life, some things you just have to suck up even if they aren't your first choice.
However, I think you need to try and persuade DH to take the train if it takes half the time and you don't really need the car at the other end. He's being unreasonable to refuse. Why does he want to drive? Is it the money?
Why do you need any stops if the journey's only 200 miles. Three hours tops unless you're taking ye olde turnpikes
<<misses point >>
Just get the train but no need to go to your MILs party anyway
As others have suggested, set off in the evening (say, 7pm) and you'll be there by 11pm. My parents live 300 miles away and if I choose the time I travel carefully I can do the drive in 5 hours.
I'm gutted that I'm missing my dad's 70th next week. I can't be there because I'm due to give birth any day now and my pregnancy is high-risk so I need to be at my local hospital where the care plan is lined up. I think my dad is really disappointed too, despite the fact that I have a pretty good excuse!
6 hours to drive 200 miles seems excessive. I appreciate traffic can be a nightmare but constant stops are really counterproductive as they just extend the journey time. I do a lot of motorway miles and am pretty practised at the lightening stop - park, wee, takeaway coffee and out again - and the quickest I can manage from coming off the motorway to rejoining is 15 minutes.
I'd suggest travelling early in the morning. Pack the car and get everything ready, then wake and load the kids up still in their PJs with blankets and pillows so that they sleep most of the way. You'll miss the worst of the traffic and make better time. Only stop if you absolutely have to.
As a one off I would do it. It's a big birthday for yor mil and it'd be a shame if you don't all go.
We had similar one year for a wedding, the wedding was a 3.5 hour drive away and the weekend before we had to drive to Italy. Our kids were pretty good for long journeys but were still young and only just out of nappies. We decided to go by train to the wedding for variety but our extended famiy couldn't believe we went by train and bus.
We booked well in advance and got a family travel card to bring the cost down, or it would have been very expensive. Also would your kids be actually calmer on the train? Or would you end up having to deal with energetic kids in public, rather than strapped down in the back of a car
Or if you do drive could you breakup the journey with a travel lodge?
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