It’s holiday time! Whether you are planning to travel to a mystic wintry destination or to a tropical sunny one, your kids will shudder with joy at the thought of exploring new things and places. While we hope that they will fully enjoy the trip, we must admit that traveling with kids can be an overwhelming experience for a parent, yet a wonderful one if it is planned carefully. This is why we thought to share with you 10 of the most important tips to bear in mind when you plan your family trip.
You already chose the destination where you and your family want to relax! It sounds like an exciting adventure and you can’t wait to jump into it. But…you may want to plan the route you will follow to visit the places or where you will stay. Are those areas easy to reach? Are they far from your hotel or airport/train station? If so, what transport means you need?
If you have babies or toddlers, you may want to make sure that the places are safe and easy to reach. Kids might become impatient or tired if the trip is too long and that will not allow them to fully enjoy the beauty of the trip. Not to mention that it will be tiring for you and your spouse as all your attention will be on your child’s tantrums or crying.
Therefore, make sure that the places you will visit are safe, easy to reach and to explore.
Don’t pack more than what you truly need! Everything you have in the house or closet might look like it is indispensable and you must take it, but nowadays you can find almost everything wherever you travel. What you should be concerned about is the type of clothing you need at the destination based on the climate and medication in case your kids have health issues. If you’re traveling somewhere sunny, skin protection is also a must. Don’t take toys, pillows or any other “stuff” that only fills up your luggage. Carrying too much with you can slow you down and it limits your flexibility. Your main priorities are the kids – not your suitcases.
Kids can become impatient when they are on the plane/train/car and you don’t want them to be stressed out during a trip which should be relaxing for all of you. Thanks to technology, there are plenty of toddler-friendly applications or devices which can entertain the kids. One of the most important devices you could give a kid is a camera. It will give your child the chance not only to focus more on their surroundings, but you can create an album with their first photos. This photo album will be priceless when they become adults.
If your kids are already in school, encourage them to keep a record of the trip and describe the places they see, how they feel about the trip and if they have learned something new from it. They could either draw or write their ideas. It is a perfect activity to develop their creativity and thinking.
If you travel by car or train, your dietary habits could be affected as you won’t have the same amount of time and regularity as you had at home to dedicate for eating. In addition, sugar levels might go lower or higher, the stomach might be confused or disturbed by the time or what you and your kids are eating as well. This is why you need to have some healthy snacks with you until you reach the destination. Even after you arrive and settle in at your destination, try to feed the kids at the same hours they are used to eating at home.
When planning your family trip, one of the most important aspects of it is the transportation set up for when you arrive at your destination. Some children feel comfortable in crowded transport means like train/buses, and they might enjoy interacting with other people, while other children can easily become inconsolable and tired by the crowds and noises around them. You could either help your kids slowly adapt to noisy places before you travel, or you could choose renting a car since it will allow your kids to relax and enjoy the trip on a more one-on-one basis. Plus, a car can allow you to stop wherever and whenever you want without being rushed or worried by a bus timetable.
You must make sure that your kids hands are always clean before and after they eat, and before and after they use the toilets. Therefore, don’t forget the baby wipes, hand gel or sanitizers! Trust us, it’ll be worth it in the end.
Your family trip is not just about the place you will visit. It is also about what your kids will learn from it and how they will feel about it. At times, kids will naturally become impatient, but mustering the energy and patience to play games with them while waiting for the flight/train/bus will aid a long way. Having patience to explain to them the surroundings and help them develop their desire of exploring and knowledge is important as it helps them become more aware of the beauty and importance of the place, but it will also strengthen the bond between you and the kids.
Before traveling, discuss with your doctor if there are any medical precautions you and your kids need depending on the destination or current health conditions. Most importantly, make sure you do not travel to places where you child might be at risk of developing malaria.
It is important planning and being careful since you want to offer your kids the best experience, but don’t forget to also keep your cool. If you are struggling with selecting a place in your budget, you can definitely turn toward a site like Attractiontix – a place with hundreds of amazing options for kids as well as adults with tons of discounts on each of them. The trip is also a gift for you and your spouse and you should all fully enjoy it.
Now, travel on!
Originally published on The Seattle Lesbian