Car journeys can be stressful at the best of times. However, thinking about the stress of driving for several hours straight with screaming, tired and constantly complaining children can be enough to instantly put you off any type of trip.
However, the UK's number one digital motoring marketplace, Auto Trader, recognises that with a few simple steps, it can be easier than you think to keep the kids happy in the car - although it may involve playing the Frozen soundtrack on repeat.
Having conducted a recent survey of 1,000 motorists, Auto Trader found that turning to the latest gadget was key to avoiding any ‘Are we there yet?’ moments, with 73% of respondents saying they gave their kids gadgets to stay entertained.
Giving children their own personal headphones or portable DVD players for car journeys also made long trips more bearable, with almost a third of parents saying they let their kids listen to their own tunes and 27% handing over their tablets and turning on a kid's film.
Further to that, 1 in 3 parents said that the latest pop song kept their kids occupied while on journeys, a trait that was shared by many of the parents as a nostalgic reflection of their own childhood trips.
The use of technology, however, is still being met with hesitation. Three-quarters of those surveyed said they felt their children were too reliant on modern-day technology, and were missing out on the games they played in the car when growing up, like Sarah from London, who said: "I used to love playing i-spy with my brothers when I was in the car. Now all my kids want to do is listen to music or play iPad games. The journey feels like a chore rather than a fond memory of visiting our friends or relatives."
"It’s perhaps no surprise to see that technology is now the primary choice when it comes to keeping kids entertained during a long drive," says Jon Quirk, editor-in-chief of Auto Trader.
"However, it is interesting to see that this is apparently at the loss of the art of conversation and parents are feeling that their children are too reliant on modern tech."
Of course, car journeys are about so much more than getting from one place to another when you're a child. Remember how magical car trips could be? Landscapes soaring past, cosy slumbers, intimate conversations (and nagging fights!) with siblings and a new adventure every time you buckled your seat belt.
Auto Trader understands the stresses of car journeys for parents, and with technology only getting more advanced, have come up with some inventive ways to embrace technology while on those long, arduous journeys. This, of course, alongside feeding them with tasty snacks and arming them with colouring pens and books…
Here’s to a stress-free journey, parents!