8 Tips for Taking a Motorhome Vacation with Young Children

In many respects, a motorhome is ideal for travelling with kids of all ages. You have extra room for everyone’s luggage, and RVs tend to offer more sleeping spaces than your typical hotel room. Plus, travelling in a motorhome is just plain fun, and it is something that kids can get excited about.

In order for your motorhome family vacation to be a success, however, you do need to do some thoughtful planning. Here are 8 tips to ensure a smooth, safe and enjoyable trip for the whole family.


1. Plan the duration of your trip carefully.

The idea of three or four luxurious weeks in a rented motorhome trekking across the Outback may sound ideal to you. But don’t forget that small children can fatigue easily with travel. You want your vacation to feel long, but not for the wrong reasons. When you are dealing with impatient, frustrated kids who just want to go home, it can feel way longer than you’d like.

On the other hand, some kids really get into travel, and will enjoy every minute of an extended vacation just as much as you. So consider the ages and personalities of your children, and plan your trip duration around their needs. That might mean making it a few days shorter, or it might not—it all depends on your family dynamic.


2. Pick a vehicle size which will allow everyone sufficient space and privacy.

A lot of motorhomes are advertised as having four or more berths, which may make you think that they have plenty of room—but in smaller models, that “room” can be pretty crammed together.

Consider all the problems which can result from a lack of space. Siblings are more likely to squabble. Kids may avoid their parents. Even for parents, cramped quarters may become frustrating. Everyone may become short with one another. So pick a motorhome which is large enough to really accommodate the entire family comfortably.

There is also the matter of the bathroom. You should park at campgrounds which include toilets and showers so that there is a more private option, but you probably should still look for a motorhome where the onboard bathroom can be easily screened off.

Why? This gives you a lot more options for bathroom breaks on the road. You can literally pull over anywhere instead of looking for a rest stop. That means happier kids (and parents) and less time wasted on the way to your destination.


big vehicle space


3. Look into optional equipment rentals if you need them.

Some motorhome rental companies will allow you to tack on extra supplies for your kids at a reasonable fee. These may include booster seats, car seats, portable cribs, outdoor toys and so forth. Check into this before you make plans to bring your own. Renting these supplies can be much easier and more convenient.


motorhome child seats


4. Plan activities every member of the family can enjoy.

If your five-year-old child hates hiking, planning miles upon miles of hiking probably will not result in the most enjoyable trip. By all means, do some hiking, but try to factor in your child’s stamina and pick some routes which will not exhaust his or her enthusiasm.

Your kids are more likely to tolerate the activities you want to do if you also plan some specifically around their interests. If your eight-year-old is obsessed with horses, plan a horseback ride one day. If your kids love to swim, plan a hike to a lake.


5. Stay at campgrounds which are kid-friendly.

After a day in the motorhome, most kids are going to want to stretch their legs and run around. The best campgrounds to choose are those which have some wide open spaces and which will tolerate their noise levels. That way they can burn some of their excess energy off before bedtime.


campground australia playground


6. Make sure your children are buckled in while the motorhome is in motion.

Kids are likely to look upon the motorhome as a kind of living room in motion, and may treat it accordingly if you do not remind them that it is still very much a vehicle. It is just as vital for them to sit down and buckle up while you are driving as it would be in a car. Set firm rules on this so that your children stay secure.


7. Put car seats where they belong and make sure small children stay in them.

On that note, very small children will need to remain in car seats. For every model of motorhome, there are ideal locations to position the seats. Ask about this when you are booking your rental so that you know the safest seats in the vehicle for car seat placement.


8. Remember, you are providing your own room service.

Finally, a motorhome can be a far more comfortable option than a hotel room for accommodations, but there is a catch—and that is that there is no room service. When you stay at a hotel, you go out each day and enjoy your activities, and then come back to a clean room. That doesn’t happen when you are staying in a motorhome.

So if you allow your kids to get out of control, they (or you) will have to clean up the entire mess. Over the course of days or weeks, you may find yourself staying in a motorhome which is less and less tidy.

Try and prevent this by again setting firm rules in advance. That way you can spend less time cleaning up after your kids and more time enjoying the sights on your vacation.

Armed with these 8 tips, you are now ready to plan a great motorhome trip with your kids. With the right campervan and supplies, kid-friendly campground bookings, activities planned for the whole family, and rules for safety and tidiness, you can create a fun and memorable experience travelling in the Outback with your loved ones.


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