*This is a sponsored post by Cars.com. More info on family-friendly vehicles and car seat safety can be found here. All reviews and opinions expressed in this post are based on my personal view.
So, you’re in the market for a new vehicle, but you also have a family with young children to accommodate. Yikes! You can’t just pick up any old ride to transport your little ones. Many of us parents have a detailed list of preferences when it comes to car shopping. However, we often tend to overlook some very important features when it comes to finding the perfect family car. I learned this the hard way when we prepared for our family road trip this summer. Now as I shop for my new vehicle, I know exactly what to look for! I am here to share with you what they don’t tell you about choosing the perfect family car. Hopefully this helps you on your vehicle search. Keep reading to learn more!
- Plan ahead. Do you plan on having more children within the next few years? Do you foresee transporting your children PLUS their friends? Allow for these instances when considering seating capacity. You may not need a minivan but, a tiny sedan may not be a great fit either. Also, make sure your vehicle can accommodate your car seats.
- Consider storage space. This was especially brought to my attention as we geared up for our 34 hour road trip this summer. As parents we typically have to carry around strollers, diaper bags, backpacks, grocery, etc. It’s also a good idea to have an emergency car kit stored in your vehicle. Then of course, on special occasions you may need to store things such as luggage or bicycles. You want to allow enough room for your children AND the extras you may be brining along for the ride. Perhaps you need a large trunk or a bike rack that needs to be added to the car; keep this in mind.
- Entertainment! Perhaps a built-in DVD player is a must-have in your car. At the very least, you will want to have multiple USB ports in your car. With all of the technology children like to carry around today, USB outlets have become essential. I, personally, love having USB access in the back seats for my children to use.
- Watch for collisions! Front and rear collision warning signals can help you avoid crashing into someone or something. A rear view camera can also be useful to help avoid collisions.
- Air bags- you can find air bags that can be deactivated for seats holding young children and car seats. You may also want to consider having rollover and side airbags in your vehicle.
- Other safety features- there are many other safety features you may want to have in and on your vehicle. If you live in an area where it gets icy and snowy, you will want to have some sort of traction control and anti-lock brakes. Perhaps you would like an alert for when you drift out of your lane as the kiddies distract you from the backseat (we all know how common that can be). Consider all of these things when purchasing your new family vehicle.
- Keep the cost and upkeep in mind! Raising a family can get pretty freakin’ expensive. If you can cut back on costs while still getting what you want, that’s a win. Set a reasonable budget, and be flexible with features that are not high priority for your family. A super high maintenance vehicle may not be a great idea.
Ultimately you want to make sure that your family is comfortable and safe while on the road. Be sure to make a checklist before you start your search. It will make the process a lot less overwhelming. Hopefully these tips helps you out quite a bit.
What are some of your family car shopping tips? Please share in the comments below!
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