Don't take the middle seat: The ZOZI staff road trip survival guide

May 04, 2016                 3m read time
ZOZI Staff

You know the drill: Load up the cooler, pile the trunk high, pull on your comfiest car pants...did someone pack a phone charger? Whether you're cruising Highway 1 top-down for fun or transporting the kids to who-knows-where-Aunt-Susan-lives, prepping for a road trip can be exhausting. We polled our very own ZOZI staffers on their experiences with every type of road tripper—from kids to pups—and got some pretty savvy suggestions. 

But first, meet our panel of staffers:


The Little Balls of Energy - the crazy kids

Kid falling out of car collegehumor

Kid falling out of car



Children are tiny drunk people. They require plenty of different snacks, a 15-minute break every hour, and a ton of wet wipes, paper towels and dish towels. - Deena, Account Executive

Don't sit in the middle. That center seat is a vortex of misery when there are kids on both sides. - Cyndy, Senior Production Manager

Make room in the trunk. - Dan, Product Marketing Manager


Llama sleeping gifbin

Llama sleeping



Bring a felt tip marker so you can draw a mustache on them. Take a pic. Post to Instagram. Repeat. - Blair, Production Manager

This is an opportunity for shameful torture, but if you have a kind heart... a pillow from home and a cuddly blanket means one less person asking "Are we there yet?" - Deena

I use a "snoozer" L-shape pillow that straps to the seatbelt. It's designed for children, but it still works for adults. Because car sleeping can be a real pain in the neck! - Darcy, Email Marketing Manager


Boo from Monsters, Inc  shape

Boo from Monsters, Inc 



Most gas stations and grocery store have bathrooms - use the Google Maps "add a stop" feature to find the closest one. - Etienne, Product Manager

Offer to fill up the tank while they go. That way they can scout out the bathrooms and you can avoid the grossest ones. - Cyndy

Leave them home... - Deena

Stop making fun of me. - Dan


Cat driving car indiatimes

Cat driving car



The driver controls the music and the convo. Make a driving schedule to break up the monotony. If it's a spouse, provide intermittent shoulder/neck rubs. Make sure they have sun shades and a lumbar pillow. - Deena

The person riding shotgun has to hand-feed you In-N-Out. Also, wearing pants is optional. If anyone has a problem with that, THEY CAN WALK. - Blair

Gets to choose the music and control the air conditioning. When I take over driving from my fiance, the car gets about 15 degrees warmer. - Darcy

This is ALWAYS me. Be sure to have playlists downloaded so that you still have tunes even through areas with spotty cell service! Podcasts!!! Some favorites are Radiolab, Invisibilia, and This American Life. Stay caffeinated. - Jessye, Account Manager

Always have a co-pilot talking with you and putting on good music so you don't fall asleep. - Etienne

Doesn't have to buy the beer. - Dan

...and of course, stack up on some choice forms of audible entertainment. Check out this nifty list we put together of awesome audiobooks and hilarious stand-up comedy albums for some quality laughs.

The Pulsing Neck Vein - the one who's highly susceptible to road rage

Barney Stinson mad kellystar2884

Barney Stinson mad



Should not be allowed to drive. - Darcy

Sit in the far back... - Deena

Leave them at home. Why do you hang out with these people, anyway? - Dan

The Beano - the one who's gassy

Guy farts in car joyreactor

Guy farts in car



Get a mini car humidifier that uses essential oils (like this one!). It'll keep the cabin smelling fresh. Bonus: Use lavender essential oils and benefit from its calming effects. (See: Road Rage person.) - Blair

Sit with the road rage person instead... - Deena

Make more room in the trunk. Seriously, who are these people? - Dan

The Cuddly Companion - the pet on the road

Dog out car window giphy

Dog out car window



Our pup tends to get carsick, so we've learned to 1) give him a couple of gingersnaps before we leave (it works!), 2) keep paper towels handy, and 3) have a few plastic bags on hand to pack any mess—or dirty bedding—that might arise. - Cyndy

Plan ahead for where you can stop, and check for places that allow pets. And if they have to stay in the car, that the temperature will be comfortable for them. As with the kids, ensure plenty of stops for a change of pace. - Deena

Take a pet blanket so your pet always feels at home. - Etienne

Get a brand new long-lasting chew bone (the ones made from a Nyla are great). It will help keep your pup occupied for a good chunk of time. - Blair

Bring along a collapsible water bowl, pack an extra water jug, and keep a towel handy to wipe off dirty paws. - Jessye

Bring lots of treats. - Dan


You know that city you've never visited, that weekend trip you've been meaning to take, or that park you've only gawked at in photos? Now's the time: Grab the Garmin and prepare the Spotify playlists—hitting the road can be fun no matter what kinds of characters you've got in the car.

ZOZI Staff

We love to Get Out There - through activitiesgetaways and online booking software for businesses. 

Subscribe +

Get the best stories and activities, personalized just for you. Go on, get out there!

You might also enjoy: