Tips for Traveling with Kids
If you’re thinking about taking a vacation with your kids, you may be wondering if the stress is even worth it, but with a little planning, it’s not hard to find ways to make your trip smooth and fun. Here are some tips on planning a vacation with kids.
Choose a Kid-Friendly Resort: The best accommodations for families are all-inclusive resorts. No need to drive the kids all over town when everything you need is in one place. Plus, you pay one fee for everything you need on vacation! No stress and you’ll stay within the budget. Hallelujah! Find a resort that includes a children’s club. Even if you want to spend family time together, it doesn’t hurt to let the kids get their wiggles out at a fun childcare program for an hour or two a day. Also, find a place with a kid-safe pool. Many resorts have shallow pools or even kid-specific pools with playgrounds. Kids’ menus and activities are also a plus.
Make the Flight Fun: If mom and dad are stressed out about flying, chances are the kids will be, too. So make it fun! Get the kids excited about watching airplanes from the terminal window. Go window shopping in the airport. Let everyone choose their own restaurant at the food court, if you have time. And don’t forget about airport museums! If you’re at an international airport, chances are there will be some fun displays. When you’re on the plane, make sure you have plenty of entertainment to last the flight. Charge the electronics before you leave, and be sure to pack snacks, books, and crayons for the flight.
Create a Travel Bag: To make the trip even more fun—and to keep the kids busy with new toys—create a travel bag that only comes out on the plane or in the car. Stock it with new, fun surprises that your kids have never seen before! There are plenty of travel games, tiny picture books, and travel-size snack packets that you can find and fill a bag with. A cosmetic bag with a hanger is ideal, because then you can stick it on the back of a seat.
Keep Your Kids Informed: Obviously, an infant is not going to know or care where they are going next. But a toddler is very aware of his or her surroundings, and will enjoy knowing what is going on. Let your child stay in the loop of your travel plans so he or she knows what to expect. After all, mom and dad have plenty of time to be prepared for transition or the intensity of the next activity. It’s easier if the kids know, too! Give your kids ten, five, and two minute warnings before you switch activities. This way, they can mentally transition and are less likely to throw fits when it’s time to go.
Most important of all, don’t expect everything to go perfect, there will be hiccups, and there will be melt downs. Let go of the small stuff as best as possible and enjoy creating memories that your family will cherish for years to come. All the extra effort will be worth it in the long run.
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