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The Most Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping (That Drive Me Nuts!)

After taking many road trips this summer and becoming accustomed to these many habits, I was inspired to write this as a more humorous post than helpful! Anyone who travels with kids knows that there are just some things that your child does that get on your last nerve! Here are some of the most annoying habits of kids while road tripping:

1.) Are We There Yet?

This classic phrase has not disappeared and my daughter seems to have added it at the top of her most used phrases. While taking a road trip whether we are driving one hour or six hours this phrase rings in my ears over, and over, and over, and over, and……………………..over! Does your child do the same!

are we there yet?
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2.) I Have to Go To The Bathroom….5 Minutes After Hitting the Road

Do you ask your child if they have to use the bathroom before hitting the road? Do they say no? And then 5 minutes into the drive you hear those dreadful words….I have to go to the bathroom?

This is an all too common occurrence for me when heading out on a road trip with my daughter. She will be dead set against using the bathroom before leaving even with much encouragement and sometimes even being forced to sit on the pot to no avail. But as sure as the sky is blue not far into the drive she will pipe up with “Ma, I got to go to the bathroom.”

wooden hanger with body brushes and toiletries on white wall
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Photo by Karolina Grabowska on

3.) I’m Bored

I’m Bored…another classic statement. You spend hours packing and unpacking and repacking to make sure you have everything you need for your kids before hitting the road, including plenty of forms of entertainment for the ride.

But do you find that shortly into the trip the child has exhausted all entertainment options and you start hearing the dreaded, “I’m Bored?” As if there is something you can do while trying to focus on going down the highway at 60 miles an hour trying not to go off the road because your kiddo demands your attention?

My response….use your imagination! Wait….do those even exist anymore?

bored, Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping
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4.) Can I Have Your Phone?

So the tablet dies, the toys are not entertaining, and there is nothing to look at out the window. The next question naturally is “Can I have your phone?” You know, the one you are using for GPS directions or to play some enjoyable and entertaining music while you yourself are spending hours in the car. Or the one that you are trying to conserve the battery just in case of an emergency?

But sure, you can have the phone, that probably doesn’t have any service and therefore no Youtube videos anyways. This is a constant battle that I find when road tripping with my daughter, and its not just once, but multiple times that I hear this phrase!

apple applications apps cell phone
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Photo by Tracy Le Blanc on

5.) I Can’t Walk

This is perhaps one of the most annoying habits that my daughter has developed. The consistent need to do no physical activity! Anytime there is any walking involved, she will stand and pout, start complaining that her leg hurts, or sit down and cry. But you bet the moment she becomes interested in something the pain magically disappears and the pouting goes away and she’s running through the woods or along the sidewalk!

It’s all a matter of the mind! This one has been especially difficult lately with our travels shifting to more outdoor adventures due to the pandemic.

hiking, Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping
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6.) I’m Hungry….20 Minutes After Throwing Away The Meal I Just Bought Her

Another very frustrating habit! You stop for a quick meal or sit down for a full dining experience. The child is excited and orders their favorite items. The food comes and suddenly al hunger has disappeared. You beg and beg the child to eat, telling them that they may not get another chance for a while. But….they….just….can’t….do…it. There’s no room in that little tummy.

But you get back on the road and twenty minutes late (or less!) you hear “Ma, I’m hungry. Ma, what can I have to eat?” coming from the back seat. A waste of money and a waste of time (if you actually stop for something else!)

Bring extra snacks!

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Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on

7.) I Unbuckled My Seatbelt

The car comes to a stop, but you’re not getting out yet. The child feels the car stop and assumes that you are getting out and off comes the seatbelt. A small annoyance, but then you have to get out of the car and re-buckle them in, just to have them do it again.

Luckily she can now buckle her own seat belt, so this one has not been a problem!

seat belt, Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping
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Photo by Kelly Lacy on

8.) Can We Go Home Now?

So you have spent hundreds on planning the perfect road trip and hours researching and booking, You get on the road and no sooner does your child say “Can we go home?” or “When are we going home?”

The perfect statement to make you question whether it was all worth it or if you should just stop the efforts in the future.

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9.) Kicking the Back of The Seat

This one is one of the most annoying habits of kids while road tripping, or any form of travel for that matter! If you have ever visited a movie theater or sat in front of a child on a long haul flight you may have plenty of experience with this one. Being in a small, enclosed space like a car is just as bad, if not worse! Trying to stay entertained or just getting worked up with their siblings/cousins, kicking the seat is a common occurrence on a road trip with kids.

One of my child’s most annoying habits while traveling is in fact kicking the back of the seat!

Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping
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Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on

10.) Complaining That The Music Is To Loud/Replaying The Same Song

Two of the most annoying habits of kids while road tripping! My child likes to complain that the music is to loud, even if it is barely audible. Why should you except to enjoy yourself a little bit anyways? Unless, of course, it is one of her favorite songs. Then it can be at full blast. Which leads me to the next habit….

Replaying the same song, over and over and over again! There is nothing like listening to Let It Go ten times in a row!

music, Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping
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BONUS: When her cousins are in the car….the chaos ensues!

The majority of the time it is just her sitting in the backseat, which cuts back on the noise I’m sure many of you face when road tripping with more than one child! When one or more of her cousins joins us, the fighting, tears, laughing (okay, this one is not so bad), and seat kicking is tripled!

Road tripping with children
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What has been your experience with road tripping with young children and what are the most annoying habits your child has?

Tips for Road Tripping with Children and Avoiding These Issues (Hopefully!)

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Traveling with kids is both a challenge and an adventure. Here are some of the most Annoying Habits of Kids While Road Tripping.
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  1. Isn’t it funny how kids are all alike on road trips? I can so relate to the “I have to use the bathroom” five minutes into a trip (relatedly, also always five minutes after bundling my daughter into a snowsuit!). But the biggest road trip issue we’ve always had is the great battle over music. I’m still trying to figure out how my music at volume 10 is too loud, but hers at volume 20 needs to be turned up? She’s 22 now and we still bicker over it. At least she doesn’t kick the seat anymore 😀

  2. Lol! I can totally relate to number 9. Ever since her feet could touch the seat she has been kicking them. Now that she is taller and her feet touch the floor it is no longer occurring. Our daughter went on her first road trip at 7 days old so it has always been a part of life for her. I have to say she road trips better than any adult I know!

  3. United kids of the World! We all have our fun stories while driving with little ones and think it will get better, which never does 🙂 mine are teenagers now and complain about everything.

  4. Haha I don’t have kids but still chuckled to most of these! I’m sure lots of parents can relate to this 😀

  5. Such a fun and interesting post. I don’t travel with children, I don’t have kids. But I guess it can be irritating sometimes, especially when they ask for a bathroom moments after the break. It’s great to show children the world. It’s fantastic if they love road trips!

  6. Haha so true! I don’t have kids yet, but I’m sure my parents could relate when I was younger and fighting with my sister in the back seat on long drives 😛

  7. Fighting with or annoying their sibling doesn’t make the list? I can remember driving my parents crazy in the backseat when my brother and I would fight or try to annoy each other.

  8. Hahaha, this takes me back to all of the road trips I went on with my family back in the day to go see family. I too was guilty, along with my siblings, of pestering my parents beyond belief while we were in the car for hours.

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