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Old 06-13-2017, 07:57 AM
 
Location: MMU->ABE->ATL->ASH
9,110 posts, read 17,054,828 times
Reputation: 9959

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You might want to get something like this:

https://smile.amazon.com/Black-White...child+eye+mask

to help sleep in the morning and at nap time.

Also get some cheap sunglasses also.

Other Suggestions: Get a small cooler (about the size of 9-12 cans of soda works good) , Load it with small (refillable) water bottles, (Freeze them "Overnight" if your room has a freezer) fill the cooler with ice at the hotel, also things like carrot sticks, cheese etc. If the ice melts before the end of the driving day, Most Restaurants can re-fill it with Ice for you as long as its not a Huge Size, Flip lids work better then zipper kind,

Make the passenger seat your Work Surface, Load up the floor infront of it with "stuff that you are moving" I big piece of cardboard from the edge of the seat up to the glove box to keep it from sliding, if you stop you don't want it all flying forward out of your reach, What worked best for me was a Box on the Seat that had thing like a towel under it to make it level. The 1/2 the box closest to you thing that you need to hand back near the passenger door the cooler, game packs, wash/drys.

Do Not pack Stuff on the floor under his feet, all sorts of stuff will fall there and it will be messy, the small trash bags can be left there for clean up. Plan on anything you hand him will wind up on the floor within 10mins.

Last edited by flyonpa; 06-13-2017 at 08:13 AM..
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Old 06-13-2017, 06:27 PM
 
380 posts, read 765,500 times
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Lists, lists, and more lists. You will forget things so keep a running list from now and keep adding to it. Pack the car very carefully. Divide your list by what should go in front seat, what goes in the back, and what goes in the trunk. Snacks, drinks, and toys within reach. Bring paper towels for spills and empty plastic bags for trash. Anticipate stopping way more than you think you will. I drove from PA to FL with a 1 year old and 4 year old. We pretty much had to stop every hour. Sometimes we made it to our goal of 2 hours but that was rare. Someone always needed to have their diaper changed or use the restroom. The DVD player would stop working. A spilled drink. The little one would start crying just because he was bored and tired of being in the car. Or they would just get super restless and I would stop to have them stretch their legs. Maybe it won't be so bad with 1 but try to relax and roll with it.

Think about the positioning of the car seat. The middle is safest and allows you to access your child more easily. The side seats will allow you to hook one of those DVD players onto the back of the front seat. I would probably go with the safest middle option and get a handheld DVD player or iPad. Maybe start downloading and showing him how to play different apps from now that way they will know how to play them during the trip.

My 1 year old got a horrible heat rash from the car seat (which never gave us a problem before plus we had the AC blasting). Anticipate this and bring some kind of cream or something that might help.

Honestly, I think 12 hours is very optimistic. We were pretty over it after 6 hours of drive time (plus all the stops) and would find a hotel for the night.

I wanted to add info about the tolls. Keep a ton of change, dollar bills, and some $5s next to you in the coin area. That way you are prepared for any amount the toll might be. I have seen tolls from $0.50 (New Jersey) to $10+ (Virginia). Some of them require exact change but it's rare.
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Old 06-13-2017, 06:37 PM
 
380 posts, read 765,500 times
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OP, I thought of one more thing. Bring his favorite snacks. Don't stress too much about the junk food. We found it next to impossible to maintain a good healthy diet while on the road. So we just sort of gave up and reminded ourselves it was only temporary.
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Old 06-14-2017, 11:48 AM
 
Location: Pierce County WA
102 posts, read 57,146 times
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OP, you will be fine. I was born in southern California. We moved to Vermont when I was a toddler. We didn't take a plane, we drove all the way there. Took eight days, but we did. It's long, but doable.

I don't really have that many suggestions, sorry, but I would definitely pack lots of healthy snacks and toys. As well as, of course, the shows and games on the tablet. They didn't have tablets when I was a toddler and I was fine.

Make sure to take plenty of breaks to stretch your legs and maybe play a bit with your son.
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Old 06-14-2017, 12:50 PM
 
7,351 posts, read 4,184,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bb2315 View Post
Hi! I figured it'd be easier to make one thread than two..


First question, I am driving from NY to WA and will likely be in the car 12+hrs/day for 4-5 days just myself and my 2 year old. Any tips on keeping him busy? I will be downloading shows and games on the tablet for him but I'm sure that'll only last so long.


Second question, what do I do about tolls? I looked into an ezpass but it looks like that only works in NY and some surrounding states, but not nearly every state I'll be passing through. I could bring cash (if they all accept cash??) but is that going to take longer? I really have no experience with driving long distances.


Any tips are very appreciated! Thanks in advance
I would ship the car and hop on a plane. And I have driven long distance from Mexico to North East USA. I would not do it with a toddler.

It was like $600 to ship a car. By the time you pay for hotels, and all the food along the way, that is the equivalent of paying to ship a car and a flight. And with a whole lot less stress.
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Old 06-14-2017, 08:54 PM
 
1,168 posts, read 2,392,734 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LowonLuck View Post
I would ship the car and hop on a plane. And I have driven long distance from Mexico to North East USA. I would not do it with a toddler.

It was like $600 to ship a car. By the time you pay for hotels, and all the food along the way, that is the equivalent of paying to ship a car and a flight. And with a whole lot less stress.
$600 is way too low. I was just getting quotes today for shipping my car to the Seattle area from NJ and it was around $1200-1500. And the OP is even further away from Wa than I am. Good luck Op - let us know how you make out with the drive!
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Old 06-15-2017, 06:34 AM
 
7,351 posts, read 4,184,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exit82 View Post
$600 is way too low. I was just getting quotes today for shipping my car to the Seattle area from NJ and it was around $1200-1500. And the OP is even further away from Wa than I am. Good luck Op - let us know how you make out with the drive!
I paid $600 to ship a car from MD to the TX/mexico border in 2010. It was in the $600 range, but I do not remember the exact amount.

Even so $1200.. is equal to or less than 6 nights in a hotel, and 18 meals on the road. Plus the stress, gas, tolls...

$2k would be money well spent. But some people have to learn the hard way.

OP- Good luck and safe travels.
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Old 06-15-2017, 06:54 AM
 
Location: MMU->ABE->ATL->ASH
9,110 posts, read 17,054,828 times
Reputation: 9959
+550 for airfare two passengers (SW) give them 4 Bags

How does she get the rest of her stuff out there? If you put the car on a carrier They "Might" let you put 1 item in the car, at your own risk, You can't pack the car full on most car carriers due to Insurance, and Trucking Regulations.

How does she get to the Airport in Albany? What does she do when get get to Seattle? A car movement will take 7-10 days to get across the US.

Taxi (Big one) to ALB airport +$100
Rental Car 8 day @ $50 day +$400
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Old 06-16-2017, 06:55 AM
 
7,351 posts, read 4,184,722 times
Reputation: 5009
Quote:
Originally Posted by flyonpa View Post
+550 for airfare two passengers (SW) give them 4 Bags

How does she get the rest of her stuff out there? If you put the car on a carrier They "Might" let you put 1 item in the car, at your own risk, You can't pack the car full on most car carriers due to Insurance, and Trucking Regulations.

How does she get to the Airport in Albany? What does she do when get get to Seattle? A car movement will take 7-10 days to get across the US.

Taxi (Big one) to ALB airport +$100
Rental Car 8 day @ $50 day +$400
I shipped a car packed to the brim with stuff.

Uber or rental car. A rental car is not $400 for a week. I rented a luxury car on vacation and it was not $400 in a tourist area.

Regardless all money well spent in lieu of spending a week in a car with a toddler stuck in a car seat.
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Old 06-16-2017, 07:39 AM
 
Location: southwest TN
8,224 posts, read 14,866,414 times
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I used to travel a lot with my 2 sons. The biggest problem I see in your plan is trying to drive 12 hours per day while also entertaining your child. The exhaustion you will have will make you not a very good driver. Please consider either hiring a college student to travel with you (what an adventure for him/her) as well as giving you an extra driver or entertainer for your child.

I understand money is tight but you need to put safety first. Driving 12 hours per day is not safe. I drive for 8 hours with breaks making it a 12 hour day when travelling back up north to visit friends and family and 2 days on the road leaves me exhausted for the 1st day visiting. I realize there's a world of difference in our ages but it's the driving stress and with not having a 2nd pair of eyes AND being the sole entertainer of your child, I think the suggestion of hiring a student to help is the best for both of you.
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