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10 Gadgets that make family vacation easier

Michelle Maffei is a freelance copywriter covering a variety of topics both online and in print, from parenting to beauty and more. Combining her two favorite loves, writing and motherhood, she has found joy in even the most challenging ...

Keep kids entertained

It seems like a game of "I Spy" just doesn't go as far as it did when you were a kid on the open road with your family. Instead of resigning to a trip filled with sibling bickering and "are we there yet?" questions, discover ten gadgets that make family vacation easier by keeping kids entertained for the whole round trip!

Keep kids entertained
1MP3 players and tablets

Keep your kids entertained with their own favorite music with a personal iPod, MP3 player or tablet, like the Motorola Xoom or iPad. While each child rocks out to their own tunes you can enjoy the peace and quite of the open road. Some models even have movie, browsing and game capabilities, making this one powerful little for keeping kids happy.

2Personal wi-fi network

Keep your family web-ready with a Wi-Fi domain creator like the AirPort Express by Apple. This portable device plugs into any Ethernet cable and power outlet to create a personal Wi-Fi network as well as blast your favorite iPod or iTunes music to the nearest speakers.

3Digital camera

Digital cameras, especially ones equipped with digital video, can be a lifesaver on your next family vacation. Without the restrictions of celluloid, you can give fidgety kids free reign when it comes to documenting your holiday.

4Portable DVD player

Whether traveling by plane, train or automobile, your kids will fall into a TV trance when you turn on a portable DVD player, like a Panasonic DVD-LS92 9-Inch Screen Portable DVD Player, giving you a break from the sibling bickering.

>> Even on the road, you can use a little help dealing with fighting siblings

5eBook reader

Instead of schlepping your kids' favorite books on the road, pack up an eBook reader like the Kindle or Nook. These slim gadgets also stream MP4 videos and give your family web-browsing capability.

6Game apps on your smart phone

Your smart phone just isn't complete until you've downloaded game apps to keep your family vacation travel boredom-free. Many apps are free to download, such as Angry Birds, available in the Android Marketplace.

7Portable game system

Between restaurant wait times and on-the-road stretches, your kiddos will remain happy with a portable game system, such as the Play Station Portable or Nintendo DS.

8Charging stations

Charging stations that power up your wireless devices without the tangle of cords are a family vacation must-have. When you opt for travel gear like the PowerMat Portable Mat with Powercube, it charges up to three devices wirelessly and one with an adaptable plug-in while rolling up for travel.

>> Learn how to travel with kids: planning a family vacation

9Power adaptor kit

Part of your travel gear essentials, a power adaptor kit like the Samsonite Converter/Adaptor Plug Kit will make sure your family's plugged in, no matter what country you're traveling too.

10Car seat travel gear

Now that you're loaded up with more gadgets to entertain your kiddos during your family vacation, you'll need more hands free when strolling through the terminal. A handy gadget that turns your child's car seat into a stroller, like the Car Seat Travel Accessory by Traveling Toddler, makes it easy to wheel your youngsters -- and all their stuff - to and from your destination.


Although gadgets can make entertaining your kids a breeze, you can still aim for an unplugged vacation once you get to your destination. The idea of a family vacation is to get in family bonding time, so limit face time with these ten gadgets that make your family vacation easier and enjoy the change of scenery without the buzz of technology.

More on kids and technology

4 Tech gadgets your kids will love
Kids and technology: Age appropriate guide
Travel with kids: Take technology?

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