Next week (September 16-22) is Child Passenger Safety Week, and Britax wants to get the word out about careful cruising in the car with your children by sharing a recipe for safe, fun and easy car travel. Lending her expertise today is Sarah Tilton, child passenger safety advocate with Britax Child Safety Inc.:
9 essential ingredients for a successful car ride
• 1-2 convertible car seats and/or booster seats (depending on number of kids)
• 4-5 music CDs
• 10 soft toys
• 1 dash of sanity
• 6 water–filled sippy cups
• 4 different healthy snacks (options!)
• 2 window shades
As parents, our job is to keep our kids as safe as possible. The main ingredient of this recipe is a good, reliable car seat. In addition to being safe, the kid needs to be comfortable. Really comfortable. Look for a seat that adapts as your child grows and is designed with revolutionary head safety features that are clearly labeled and visible.
Wherever your travels may take you, be sure to check out new car seat laws. You may be headed for a state that requires children to be restrained in a car seat until age 8. A ticket is not on the list of ingredients, and will likely spoil anyone’s travel appetite. With the “boost” of a booster, junior’s body will fit safely under the seat belt and he’ll be able to see out the window better.
Within what feels like minutes of leaving, your toddler may (will) start to squirm. Before leaving, make a list of playgrounds and rest stops along your route and stop every 2 hours. To entertain rear-facing car seat riders, give them soft toys and soft books. Older kids should get to choose at least one (parent-approved) toy for the ride.
Let your toddler choose tunes and sing-a-longs that will keep him engaged and having fun. Keep in mind your travel time—and your sanity—and include something from Rockabye Baby Music.
If you can, make cruise time nap time. Remember to bring siesta accessories, such as pacifiers and blankies. It may be sunny—too sunny for a sleeper—so we suggest the Britax EZ-Cling Window Shades to keep little ones shielded from excessive rays and light.
This wouldn’t be a true recipe without food! Make sure your riders are happy and well fed before taking off. Nobody wants to drive with a hungry grouch. Keep water and easy-to-open-and-access snacks near your toddler.
Enjoy your trip!
*Find a local car seat check through SafeKids USA to insure proper car seat installation!
About Sarah Tilton
Sarah Tilton is a child passenger safety advocate with Britax Child Safety Inc., a leading car seat and stroller manufacturer. An active Certified Passenger Safety (CPS) technician and instructor, Tilton frequently participates in child passenger safety activities at a local, state and national level. She is currently active with the Safe Kids Charlotte Mecklenburg coalition and is a member of the North Carolina Child Passenger Safety Training Committee.
As part of their efforts to promote safe travel, Britax is giving away their Advocate 70 G3 convertible car seat! Click here to enter for your chance to win. Contest runs through Sunday, September 16. You can enter once daily to increase your chances. Good luck!
Congratulations to our winner, Amanda H., of Mountain Home, AR!