Travelling as a family should be great. It’s a chance to get away from it all, reconnect, see the sights and have a fantastic time relaxing and having fun together. But, quite often it just ends up being exceptionally stressful, and you need a holiday to recover from your holiday travel.
Traveling with kids can be tough. They complain and whine, or they get overly excited and hyper. They don’t like trying different foods or having to walk around. They want to stay up late but are grumpy when they do, and they won’t let you have a minute to yourself, you have to spend your whole break finding things to keep them occupied, even though there is absolutely loads for them to do. And, that’s if everything goes well and no one is injured or unwell.
If something does go wrong, you not only have to deal with it, you also have to worry about your children, keep them out of harm’s way and soothe any worries or concerns they may have. While dealing with the negative behavior that any excitement is sure to bring.
While this could put you off traveling until your kids have left home, that’s not the intention. Instead, you should focus on preparation. If you are prepared and organized, traveling with children can be an absolute delight. Here are ten tips to ensure your trip is as fun and stress-free as possible.
10 Tips for Stress-Free Travel with Kids
If you are flying or taking a long car journey, traveling can be extremely stressful. Kids get bored easily and don’t like having to sit still for long periods of time. Food is a brilliant way to take their mind off it and keep them happy.
Try to think of things that they like, but take them a long time to eat such as lollipops, which will also help their ears adjust to the pressure if you are flying. Don’t forget that you will also need drinks, some baby wipes and a carrier bag for any rubbish.
Plan in 15-minute Time Slots
10-15 minutes is the average attention span of a young child. So, if you are traveling for 2 hours, you’ll need eight 15-minute activities planned. Pack some games and toys, but nothing will small pieces that can easily be lost. Some coloring, or a tablet with some TV show episodes pre-downloaded and ready to watch.
While we all dream of traveling the world, while the children are young, you can find plenty of great, more local destinations to stay. You can still have a fantastic time, you’ll save money and they travel time will be considerably shorter. Remember, you’ve got your whole life to travel, starting slowly won’t hurt.
Think of First Aid
Being prepared when it comes to first aid can save a lot of tears later. Make sure you’ve got a basic kit with all of the essentials such as infant paracetamol, antiseptic wipes, antihistamines, plasters, and bandages. Then, think about your family’s specific needs. Do you need a travel Nebuliser or any medication? If so, sort them before you go and make sure that you’ve got enough to last.
When it comes to packing, it’s a good idea to take some home comforts such as your child’s favorite teddy, blanket or pillow to help them feel safe and secure.
Remember These Hacks
There are also a few invaluable hacks you should pack. Zip-lock plastic bags can be handy for storing dry clothes, keys, and money if you go to the beach. Or for taking snacks from the hotel buffet on a day out.
A lint clothes roller can also be useful for picking up sand, dirt, crumbs and anything else your children pick up throughout the day.
Give Them Some Space
The traveling stress doesn’t stop once the kids are a little older, it just changes. Teens and older children start to resent going away with their parents, which can make your life harder. Try to get them their own room and give them a little freedom and independence to keep the peace.
Take a Highchair
If your children are still young, a portable fabric highchair that can be fitted over any normal chair can make eating out while you are away much less stressful.
Keep Them Safe
As parents, one of our biggest worries, when we are out and about, is losing our children. You only need to look away for a second to find they are no longer by your side. Which is a busy tourist hotspot can be terrifying. ID tattoos can give you the peace of mind that even if the worst happens, they’ll always have your contact information with them.
Make the Most of It
Family holidays don’t last for long. Soon, they’ll be too old to come. So, try not to get too hung up on the small stresses and make the most of it while you’ve got the chance.