Between the bugs, heat, and sun, there are more than a few challenges when it comes to keeping the kids safe on summer family vacations.

Traveling with children can definitely be a hassle. (If you’ve ever had to deal with a screaming toddler on a plane, then you know what we’re talking about.) Even so, taking the kids on a summertime adventure can be a lot of fun for everyone.

Whether you’re dreading your upcoming layover, or you just can’t wait to get the kids on the road, safety should be your top concern. Here are some of the latest travel safety tips for parents from Allana Pinkerton, a certified child passenger safety technician at diono.

1. Don’t forget the car seat.

“Be sure your child is properly secured in their car seat whether you are traveling in your car or a rental car,” Pinkerton says. “Most rental car companies have car seats for rent, but bringing your own ensures it is properly cleaned, in good working condition, and you will be familiar with how to install it upon arrival.”

2. Consider bringing a car seat for the flight, too.

“If you’re flying, consider installing the car seat on the airplane,” she adds. “Laws of physics do not change just because you’re on vacation. While plane crashes are unlikely, rough takeoffs and landings can occur. Turbulence is more likely and it’s almost impossible to hold onto the baby in your lap. Plus, everyone will be more comfortable on the journey!”

3. Pack the essentials.

“Carry along a first aid kit, change of clothes, snacks, water, wipes, and diapers if needed,” Pinkerton says. “It’s always best to be prepared for all scenarios. A few toys or books to keep kids occupied is always a plus.”

4. Ensure your vehicle is tuned up and ready to go.

“If you are driving your car, be sure to get the oil changed, have the tires and brakes checked,” she adds. “Be sure the vehicle is in good working condition.”

5. Don’t drive drowsy.

“Don’t drive drowsy,” Pinkerton warns. “We all want to get to the resort, grandma’s house, or wherever you’re going, but the risk of driving while drowsy is the same as being drunk. Pull over to a safe area and take a nap or go to a park and let the kids play. It’s good for everyone to take a break from a long road trip.”

Have any helpful traveling tips we didn’t cover? Let us know in the comment section below!

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