Traveling with kids? Gadgets to make your summer trip a breeze

Traveling with kids? Gadgets that will make your summer trip a breeze

June 13th, 2013

kidsby Phil Hornshaw

We’re officially knee-deep in summer, and that means it’s time for road trips and vacations. Piling the family in the car and driving out for some camping, some grandma visits or some waterpark fun can be a blast this time of year, but kids cooped up in the backseat of a car for hours at a time most definitely isn’t.

It’s okay, though. Technology has progressed to the point at which the problem of bored kids on a trip is a thing of the past, given the right gadgets. We’ve got a few items on top that can help you keep the kids occupied and manage your sanity to make summer vacations a lot more fun.

Tablets for all your entertainment needs

If there is a single gadget that can help with occupying kids on a car ride, it’s a mobile tablet. Devices such as iPads and Android tablets cover all of your entertainment bases, from uploaded movies and cartoons, to storybook apps, games and more. Just about anything your kids could want is available through apps and other media.

You can snag a tab without breaking the bank, too. You might start at Apple and get 1 percent Cash Back on iPads, or expand your search to Best Buy and Walmart (each offering 2.5 percent Cash Back) and Target (with 2 percent Cash Back) for the sort of tablet that meets your needs. Meanwhile, RadioShack offers 3 percent, and many of the retailers above also offer gift cards for the Google Play Store and the iTunes App Store – meaning you can save money on the apps, movies and games you download.

Gaming on the go

Speaking of games, handheld gaming consoles also make great time wasters for the backseat crowd. Nintendo‘s 3DS and Sony‘s Playstation Vita each offer differing play styles, but both have a fairly extensive library of great titles that can help keep kids distracted.

GameStop is a great place to start looking for handheld consoles and games – it offers used versions of both, as well as used titles, which are sometimes cheaper than buying new. You’ll also get as much as 2.5 percent Cash Back for your trouble. Many of the retailers above also carry the 3DS, the Vita and their related games, so shop around to find the best prices.

Head to ShopAtHome.com for even more great deals on travel, car rentals and airfare this summer.

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