Just like you, vehicles work extra hard during the holidays. In addition to the regular schedule of taking kids from one place to the next, your car hauls gifts, luggage, casseroles, baked goods and assorted friends and cousins too. Plus, they get you and your family "over the river and through the woods to grandmother's house," or wherever you may be heading to celebrate. Here are five tips to avoid chaos in your car by keeping it clean, safe and organized during the holidays.

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1. Master the art of distraction. To preserve your sanity as well as keep all the passengers in a good mood, make sure everyone is equipped with sufficient entertainment for the ride. This might seem like an obvious task, but – especially for kids on long car rides – the diversions you thought would hold their attention for hours might last mere minutes! If your family car is equipped with a hotspot like the Buick Envision with available 4G Wi-Fi connectivity, the kids can stay connected to their favorite digital entertainment on the road, but it's a good idea to also low-tech options on hand, too, like activity books (the "magic" mess-free ink ones are ideal) or magnetic games.

2. A place for everything and everything in its place. Have an organizer or two in your trunk and make good use of your vehicle's built-in storage. For example, the Envision has a spacious console with dual-winged doors that make it easily accessible for the driver and the passenger. It's a great place for storing all of those items you need to have on hand, like tissues, antibacterial hand wipes, extra charging cables, bottles of water, extra snacks and more. Use large re-sealable plastic bags to store like items together and prevent the console itself from disarray. Your car should be like Mary Poppins's bag – prepared for anything, but with everything neatly hidden away!

3. Don't carry over today's clutter to tomorrow's journey. Even when you're tired and cranky after a long ride, make sure you clear your car every night, no matter where you are. Keep some trash bags in the console to consolidate discarded paper cups, gift wrap, tissues, etc. – it's amazing how quickly your car can become full of these things during the holiday season! If your kids are old enough, make sure they help out by bringing in their own belongings or helping with bags. No one should go into the house empty-handed! Tip: An empty tissue box makes a great portable (and disposable) trash can in the car.

4. Choose snacks wisely. If you're going on a road trip with little ones, inevitably they're going get hungry. But you can save yourself a lot of time and frustration by selecting snacks that are easy to clean up, rather than foods that are sticky and could stain seats. It's easier to vacuum up a few crumbs than to have to deal with messy stains! Make each kid a car snack pack for the ride with single-serving bags of their favorite crackers, chips, or granola bars, plus a water bottle and napkins (or pouch of hand wipes). No one will complain about being hungry or have the chance to fight over (and spill!) a full-size box or bag of anything.

The Buick Envision has so many features to make your holiday travels easier, including a Hands-Free Power Liftgate you can open by simply waving your foot under the bumper! See how else it can upgrade your family ride.

Image via iStock 

Topics: family travel  kids