If you have young children and want to travel with them and stay sane, this is a must read. No matter how experienced a traveler you were before children, there are things to know and essential strategies to help ensure family holidays are full of joy instead of stressful.
- Make a bag for each half-hour with a small toy, snack or activity.
- Bring their favorite book or coloring book
- Bring a quiet, couple-piece game
- Bring a new small toy they’ve never seen before. Fun surprises are the best!
- Bring headphones for their iPad (crazy I know, but not everyone is a fan of Peppa Pig!).
Planning ahead can save you a headache. When you know what to expect, your children’s expectations will be the same. Explain to them how awesome a plane ride is and make it an adventure! Here’s an idea of how to make a game out of it. Pack different small bags with the above items you’ve packed (snacks, small toys/etc.). They get to open each bag each half hour of your flight! If your kiddos are like mine, this will excite them to see what the next bag has! My last bag is always the iPad or a special blanket for nap time. You will also be thankful for these activities once you reach your destination.
Bend the Rules While Dining on Holiday
Bending the rules on dining while on holiday makes life much easier. This applies to what you eat, where you eat, and how you eat. The latter is something I feel particularly strongly about — an iPad at dinner may be a big no no at home, but saves you on trips where dinners are longer and more leisurely. This departure for the normal routine makes everyone feel like holidays are special.
Book a Seat for Babies on Flights
You wouldn’t drive with a baby outside of a car seat … Flying with one unrestrained isn’t a good idea either. It costs more, but this just isn’t the place to save money.
Having your young child sitting on the floor and running around the aisle is just way too stressful. Turbulence isn’t rare – it’s a routine part of flying and unexpected bumps can keep your child safe if they are in their own seat.
Stagger Busy Days and Mellow Days.
This is key for itinerary planning! It keeps tired parents and kids fresh and excited each day.
Book a Hotel Room with a Balcony or Patio
This is one of our favorite things to do on holiday … no sitter required. Specifically select hotels and rooms with a balcony or patio so that when kids go to bed, you’ll still have a private place to relax and chat too. The alternative is for the entire family to be forced to go to bed at the same time which may be fine for one night, but gets old quickly.
Holidays need not be stressful when travelling with young children. Follow these tips and we are sure you will agree.