Burnaby, British Columbia – The British Columbia Automobile Association (BCAA) is offering tips for families who are taking road trips to avoid the cost of a traditional vacation during Spring Break.

BCAA offers tips to help alleviate tension and inject some fun into the trip:

– Involve your children in trip planning, such as having them mark the route or choosing a restaurant along the way, so they feel involved.

– Pack an activity bag with crayons, books, and games, and also make one bag for each child and let them choose what to put in it.

– Change seats at each stop, and switch drivers if you can, so that everyone gets a different seat for the next part of the trip. Young children should always ride in the back, in an age-appropriate child or booster seat.

– Take regular breaks, and if passengers start to get antsy, consider frequent stops to stretch or run around.

– Bring a pillow and blanket for nap time, and a cooler with juice boxes and snacks for when the children get hungry.

– Play games, such as singing songs, or playing alphabet and memory games, or invest in an iPod or portable DVD player. These should be kept in the back seat to avoid distracting the driver.

BCAA also recommends that vacationers get a thorough check-up of the vehicle, invest in travel insurance, make their homes look “lived-in”, carry a cell phone, and map out a driving plan beforehand. Canadians travelling to the U.S. by air now require a valid passport to gain entry, but up until May 31, 2009, those travelling by land or water may use a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license, plus proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or Canadian citizenship card.

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