All parents know the frustration of having their nice, clean car destroyed by the mess their kids make. It’s just one of the hazards of parenthood. Kids drop food, spill drinks, throw their toys around, and maybe even have accidents. This can be tough on your car, but there are simple ways to avoid a mess and keep your car clean on road trips, even when you have messy kids.
1. Keep Plastic Bags in the Car
The main use of plastic bags should be trash bags. If there’s nowhere for kids to put their trash, it will most likely end up on the floor. Make sure they have access to a trash bag at all times. One easy solution is to hang the bag on the back of the passenger seat headrest. Plastic bags can also be used to store dirty clothes if someone has to change them, and they come in handy if someone gets sick. Keeping plastic bags in the car will help in so many ways when transporting kids. They are famous for making messes and spilling things, so be sure to keep plenty of cleaning supplies on hand.
2. Cover Your Floor Mat
Some people cover their car floor mats with something like paper or even a bath rug. Paper is an easy option because you can replace it anytime you need it. All the dirt and food collects on the paper, then all you have to do is pick it up and put new paper down. Using a bath rug means spilled drinks will be absorbed instead of sitting on the floor mats and getting sticky. If neither of these is an option, find rubber floor mats. You can easily shake the dirt off and wipe them down. Using car floor mats to keep the floor of your car clean is incredibly important.
3. Always Keep Napkins or Wipes in the Car
The sooner you can clean up a mess, the better. You don’t want juice sitting on your floor mat until it gets sticky. If someone other than the driver is able to safely clean up a mess as soon as it happens, that’s one less mess you’ll have to worry about when the trip is over. You’ll also want napkins or wipes to use when you’re eating. Everyone can keep their faces and hands clean and avoid spreading the mess to the windows or seats.
4. Put a Limit on What You Bring
Maybe you’ll only let your kids bring a certain number of toys so there’s less clutter. Maybe there are only certain types of food you’ll keep in the car. For example, fruit snacks and spill-proof sippy cups would be better than oatmeal and juice boxes. Figure out what works best for you and your family and stick to it. Use what you have on hand, but you can go shopping if you are running low on treats and snacks.
While traveling with kids may not be the most exciting thing for your car, there are simple ways to avoid a huge mess and enjoy your time with your kids.
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