There is nothing worse than pulling into a service station after a long and gruelling journey, only to discover that it’s not the haven of warmth and comfort you were hoping for…
Travelling with children on long journeys can be a difficult task, so when you do take the time to stop for a break, it makes life just that bit easier if the service station contains the right facilities to suit your family.
Finding a good service station can prove to be quite challenging, but there are quite a few about, so it’s well worth planning your journey and looking up in advance the best service stations en route which contain the maximum facilities to keep you and your brood content.
If you’re not sure what makes for a good family-orientated service station, the team at Trusted Dealers has put together a wish list which should help make your next long journey a happier one.
Baby changing facilities – good baby changing facilities are a must if you are travelling with very small children. There is nothing worse than discovering a grotty, unkempt change station which you then have to lie your precious little one onto. The best baby changing facilities will usually offer more than one change station in a large communal room, a toilet for you and your family to use to save some precious time, baby bottle warming facilities and a place where you can breast feed in comfort.
Soft play areas – these are a god send if you are looking for a place for your children to let off a bit of steam prior to the journey ahead. It also means that you can drink your cup of coffee in peace whilst the kids are entertained!
Outdoor play areas – there is nothing better than an outdoor play area for the kids to play in on a hot summer’s day. The best service stations will also offer outdoor seating facilities next to the playground, so you can keep an eye on the kids whilst enjoying your respite.
Toilets – some service stations have won awards for their toilet facilities, and some have definitely not. A clean and well stocked up toilet can go a long way to easing a journey and it will make your life a lot easier if you can let the children use the toilet with ease as opposed to trying to deter them from touching absolutely everything in sight!
Restaurants – it’s well worth taking note of the type of food which is offered at service stations en route. Many provide a selection of fast food outlets for ease and convenience, but this might not always be the best option for kids with fizzy drinks and fast food making for a less relaxing onward journey. Many service stations now offer healthier eating options, which are worth the extra time and money if you can afford it.
Shops – many service stations now offer a selection of shops to cater to your every need. In particular, the larger chain supermarket outlets can be a godsend, such as M&S and Waitrose which have now been successfully installed into many service stations across the country. They not only provide a cheaper and more healthy alternative to restaurant eating, but also the chance to buy flower, snacks and other items perfect for your onward journey or final destination.