POSTED: Thursday, May 16, 2013 - 12:00am
UPDATED: Friday, May 17, 2013 - 2:39pm
(StatePoint) With summer travel season upon us, families across the country are taking to the open road for family road trips. But while the destination always leads to excitement, oftentimes the long car ride can be a drag.
Instead of listening to hours of “Are we there yet?” from the kids, there are ways to keep them -- and parents -- entertained while on the highway.
Try using these four tips to add some fun to long summer vacation car rides:
One way to combat boredom in travel-weary children is to pack surprises for the kids. Just as you notice children’s restlessness reaching peak levels, break out a surprise to assuage their monotony.
The surprises don’t have to be big -- maybe a new book, a favorite snack or a small toy -- but it will do the trick of keeping them occupied.
Classic Travel Games
No long car ride with the family is complete without playing a few classic travel games. Games like I Spy, Name That Tune and the License Plate Game will help pass the time and keep children and you engaged during the trip. Car games are also a great way for the family to bond during the journey!
Sometimes the best way to stay entertained in the car is to bring along some comforts of home. Watching movies and TV shows on tablets are increasingly popular options for travel entertainment, but sometimes there isn’t Internet connection or enough storage on your device.
However, new technology now can let you pack all those favorite family movies and music for the ride and the hotel. For example, the HP Pocket Playlist  can store 32 GB of content that you can stream to your smartphone, Slate 7  or any other Android or iOS device. You can stream video to three devices at once, or audio to five. So Mom can watch her reality show, grandma can listen to music, and the kids can watch cartoons all at the same time. For more information on technology that’s great for summer travel, visit www.hp.com .
Sometimes the perfect playlist can make a long drive fly by with a sing-along. Prepare a playlist the whole family will enjoy by letting each person in the car select a few favorite songs. Audio books are another great way to pass the time; everyone can get immersed in the story together and then discuss it when it’s done.
Long car trips don’t have to be a bore. With some easy tips and tricks, the journey can be just as fun as the destination.