Traveling with kids is different from traveling with a group of adults. Kids can be quite a handful and they are very dependent on you. You will have to look out for them the entire time and if you don’t do it right, it might ruin the entire trip. Looking after your kids while traveling in a foreign country requires a bit of planning. To avoid mishaps, here are 10 tips:
Traveling with kids – Planning your trip
#1 Check your airline’s policy on traveling with children
Airlines may have different policies to assist you if in case you are traveling with children. If you are traveling with a baby, some airlines provide strollers for free while some will charge you for a small fee.
If you want a child over two years of age to occupy a separate seat, you may be charged a full adult fare, or you may be pleasantly surprised that children’s fares cost less than that of an adult’s ticket. Usually, it is the latter. Most airlines have games, puzzles and other activities for kids but to make sure you have a smooth flight, it’s a good policy to bring your own airplane activities for toddlers.
#2 Create a budget
Before diving in and booking that dream vacation, take a bit of time to create a budget. Your vacation doesn’t have to be a strain on your finances if you plan wisely for your next family trip. After all, the last thing you want is to feel stressed because you’ve over spent on your family trip.
A great idea is to involve your kids in the planning phase as it will take some pressure off you and you’ll be teaching them good habits for the future.
#3 Book the right accommodation
Book early. Do not go looking for a hotel when you get there. You might not even get the room you want. It’s best to book a family suite online. There are many affordable family suites as long as you book early. It’s also important to choose the right destination and places with activities suitable for kids.
Camping is a fantastic way to enjoy the great outdoors, breath fresh air and get lots of exercise. It’s also a great way for your kids to learn essential survival skills, no matter what age. If you have toddlers, it’s important to be super organized. You really do want to make sure that everyone has a great time. Here are some tips on camping with toddlers. Although you do need to be organized, it can be fun!
However, if you’re not ready for a camping trip with your toddler, you could try glamping, which provides the fun of camping with some luxuries to make things easier. Here’s an example of a fun glamping holiday with the family.
#4 Spend some time on your packing list
Make sure you have all the necessities for your family holiday. Take extra care to make a checklist of everything you need if you’re traveling with a baby. Don’t forget the diapers and feeding bottles! Here’s what to pack when traveling with a baby. Flying with a baby has extra challenges so don’t ruin your family vacation by being under prepared.
It’s a good idea to carry a water bottle filled with water, as you never know when your kids might get thirsty. If you’re planning on going hiking, make sure you have hydration packs. Here are some of the best hydration packs when traveling with kids.
If you’re going on an international flight, remember to empty out the water before you go through security. Here’s a guide to the best travel water bottles.
There are several things to remember to pack when traveling with toddlers, such as baby soap and shampoo, disposable pads and even a stroller. If you’re planning on using the resort’s swimming pool, floaties are an essential item to put on your list. Here are some of the best toddler floaties and armbands to choose from.
If you’re planning a road trip, make sure you take the time to tick off all the things you’ll need for both you and your kids. Spending the time planning and thinking through what you’ll need will certainly make your trip a lot smoother. Just remember that traveling with kids is not as easy as traveling on your own or as a couple.
Traveling with kids – the trip
#5 Check in early
Always check in at the airport early. Many things could happen if the family is running late. You may have watched the classic movie Home Alone…It’s best to avoid such a situation.
When traveling with kids on a long-haul journey, choosing the right airport can make a huge difference to your stress levels. You might have to wait in transit for hours for your next flight or even stay overnight.
Do the research on your transit airport. If you’re traveling via Asia, Singapore Changi Airport has fantastic facilities for kids. Here are some useful tips on where to sleep in Singapore Airport.
#6 Bring snacks with you
There’s nothing worse than restless, hungry kids. Always bring snacks with you. It’s even better if they are healthy snacks. Do not let them binge and make sure you take control. Only give them the snacks only when the need arises!
There are plenty of easy to make snacks that will fit the bill. Here’s a list of kid-friendly travel snacks that are healthy and nutritious.
#7 Bring medication and first aid kit
Medication is essential, especially if your kids are taking something on a regular basis. It’s best to be prepared when abroad. We hope that you will have a smooth and hassle-free trip, but accidents happen. It’s best to be ready for anything all the time.
Ifi you’re traveling to places where there are likely to be lots of mosquitoes, such as tropical countries and places where there’s a possibility of contracting dengue fever, make sure you pack mosquito repellent suitable for your kids.
#8 Keep your child entertained
If you have an iPad with you, bring it. While you may want your child to enjoy the trip instead of playing games on the iPad, kids get bored quickly and you cannot expect them to have the same level of appreciation as adults. Bring something to entertain them.
#9 Plan how you will divide responsibilities
If you are traveling with your partner, make sure that you both talk about who does this and that before the trip. It’s not fair to take care of the kids alone on the trip, you also need to have a great time. You are not there to be a nanny for your own family. Share and delegate responsibilities.
Set rules for your kids and make sure they follow it. It’s best to teach your kids discipline and proper conduct, especially abroad.
#10 Make sure your kids sleep at bedtime
Your kids might get too excited during the trip and skip sleep. Do not allow this. Make sure that their Circadian rhythm is in place and make them sleep on time. That way, they will have the energy to enjoy the daily activities in your itinerary.
#11 Plan toilet stops ahead of time
Kids will want to pee during the times you least expect. They will whine, groan, and throw a tantrum if they don’t get to do their thing on the toilet. To avoid this, plan ahead. Know where all the toilet stops are.
If you’re traveling with a baby, it’s important to plan your travel times as a tired baby is not fun to travel with. Make sure you don’t interrupt your baby’s natural body clock.