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:
(There are affiliate links in this post, meaning we may get a small commission from any purchases you make. . Click here to read our full disclosure policy.)
Staying hydrated on road trips is super important. You’re exposed to all sorts of new germs, and making sure you stay 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 plan to stop every two hours, but not more unless someone is ill or it’s absolutely necessary. And, for every bathroom stop we make, everyone in the vehicle has to at least try to go the bathroom. Then we implement…
Our road trip hydration hack that works every time:
About 45 minutes before we plan to stop we hand out the water bottles and encourage everyone to drink up. 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 or these healthy drink mix packets 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.
- How to Road Trip with a Cat
- 30 Frugal & Healthy Road Trip Snacks
- How to Make a DIY Travel Kitchen and Save Money on Road Trips
- 10 Road Trip Essentials That Could Save You Hundreds
This road trip hydration trick has saved us SO many headaches and unnecessary stops on the road. I hope it’s as helpful to you as it has been for us. If so, please help spread the love by sharing the link with your friends!
Jamie writes about living intentionally and finding beauty and perspective in the adventures of everyday life. When she’s not writing, she’s living her own adventures – working full time at an ER registration desk, parenting two spicy girls, and collaborating with her husband on the remodel of a former one-room schoolhouse on their homestead in rural Wisconsin.