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Tips for Traveling with Kids

Travel, simply put, is fun. You may have done it on your own, with your friends, or with your family when you were younger. It is the type of experience that stays with you for a long time. Now that you’re older and have a family of your own, you might be planning a trip with your child (or children). It could be a lot of work, but it’s going to be worth it.

Barcelona The Wandering Juan

Here are some tips you can follow when traveling with kids.

Consider an Early Flight

The possibility of delays or changes in the schedule are lower for early morning flights because they’re usually the first ones that depart. These flights are also less crowded compared to midday and afternoon flights. Young kids won’t be overwhelmed with the crowds and would want to continue the sleep you disrupted when you brought them to the airport. 

Choose Flights that Don’t Have Long Layovers

Kids are impatient and will test your patience when they have to wait for hours in one place. Fatigue and boredom can lead to a tantrum late at night and in-between flights. When traveling with kids, it’s better to choose a flight that has no long layovers. As much as possible buy tickets with direct flights to your chosen holiday destination.

Create a List of Must-Haves

Planning is an important part of traveling with children. Create a checklist of items you might need to bring such as smartphones, trash bags, water, snacks, comfort item, tablets, and sanitation items (wipes, hand sanitizer, diapers, or tissue paper among others.) You don’t have to bring everything on your list; however, it makes it easier for you to pack and prepare for an upcoming trip.

Pack Enough Items

Some parents pack too many items thinking that these will keep their kids quiet and satisfied during their trip. However, they later realize they have to carry all these things boarding and alighting their flight, bus or train ride along with their children. Bring your child’s favorite snack and toy because chances are a plane will have limited choices for kids. You don’t have to bring all the items your child needs from home. You can always buy alternatives in your next destination.

Set Expectations with Your Child

Prepare your child for the upcoming trip by talking about it with them. Simply explaining things to them won’t be enough. Show them pictures or videos of the things you plan to do and places to visit. Even pictures and videos of the flight experience is a plus. These prepare your child for what they may experience once your vacation starts. This will also build up excitement for the trip.

Bring Entertainment while Traveling

Keep your child or children entertained with online games. Snakes and ladders was a game I used to play a lot when I was a kid. You don’t have to buy the game because you can play Snakes and Ladders online. This kind of game will keep your child occupied whether you’re waiting for your flight or at the train station. If you have stable Internet access, you can even let them play while you’re on the road. 

Another option is to download or stream your child’s favorite videos, movies and shows. These grab their attention and keep them from feeling bored while waiting. You can look for more games at Calculators.org and stream or download videos for your children via YouTube, Netflix and others.

Book Child-Friendly Accommodations

The accommodation you chose when you were still just a couple might’ve been perfect at the time, but now that you have a child, it may no longer be the ideal option. Look for a hotel or rental property that has child-friendly facilities. This makes it easier for you to care for them while still having fun. Browse different sites to get reviews and opinions. Reach out directly to the property if ever you have more questions. Booking a rental or hotel with a pool is an option if you have the budget for it.

Do Your Research Before Going

The destination you’re eyeing might be fantastic for adults but maybe not for kids of a certain age. Research about the attractions and activities you can do with your child to the city or town you’ll be visiting. Other information you may need include the type of vaccinations visitors need, visas, crossing borders if you’re traveling by land, and transportation options if you’re moving around a lot. Private transfers are more expensive but may be worth it for families traveling with young children.

These are some of the things you can do to prepare for a vacation with your child (or children). Travel is an experience they’ll never forget. It’s a great way to broaden their horizon and learn new things.

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