We love to road trip as a family and there are few tips that I’ve learned that make everything so much easier. One of the best things I’ve learned is how to stay hydrated on a road trip without having to make a million bathroom stops. This road trip hydration trick is especially helpful as a parent traveling with kids (though it works for all ages!) I’m so excited to share it today.
Road trip hydration is important – here’s why:
Staying hydrated on road trips is super important. You’re exposed to all sorts of new germs, and staying hydrated is a great way to support your immune system on the trip. Plus there’s nothing like riding in an air-conditioned vehicle all day long to really dry you out. But how do you stay on top of drinking water without having to make a million extra stops? Here’s how we do it:
We have one simple rule on road trips:
For every bathroom stop we make, everyone in the vehicle has to at least try to go the bathroom. We try not to make unnecessary stops. It takes a lot of time, and gets really obnoxious after a while. But we also want to keep everyone hydrated. Here’s what we do:
Our road trip hydration hack that works every time:
We bring a cooler full of ice water on every trip. But we don’t just sip on water the whole time that we’re driving. Instead, we hand out water and encourage everyone to drink up about 45 minutes before we’re going to make our next planned stop. This allows everyone to get a good amount of water in, with enough time for it to filter through our systems in time for the next bathroom break.
DISCLAIMER: We don’t keep our kids from drinking in between times but the idea is to just take sips of water if you’re thirsty and wait to really fill up until it’s almost time for your next stop.
We also don’t encourage drinking a lot of juice or sodas on our trip, because it seems like everybody downs those a lot faster – making for more bathroom stops. However, for a kid who’s not keen on drinking a lot of water at once I do hand out these low sugar lemonade pouches when it’s hydration time to encourage them to drink more liquids at once before we stop.
This tip isn’t just for kids!
I actually learned this in college while making 12-hour trips home and back with a friend on holiday breaks. She had a super fuel efficient vehicle, and was committed to only stopping once in 12 hours to refuel. (Crazy! I know!!) Her rule for anyone who rode with her was that they needed to bring their own drinks and snacks and that she wasn’t making any extra stops.
I learned to not drink at all except for tiny sips for most of the trip and then I would drink one or two bottles of water about an hour before we stopped so that I wouldn’t really need to use the restroom until then. In the years since I’ve used this with my kids and taught my husband the same trick. It works! Thank you Amanda from college.
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