Traveling is one of the most fulfilling things you can do with your life, and traveling with your children is a wonderful learning experience that is also very fun… for them. While kids are enjoying themselves, parents hover most of the time, making sure that they’ve got everything they need. This is why parents often sustain from going anywhere until their little ones grow up a little, but there are some brave souls that aren’t scared off that easily. Many are planning holiday trips for the season, but if this is your first time traveling with your baby or toddler, then you need to be as prepared as possible. While holiday in itself will be wonderful, getting to your destination might be a daunting task.
As you well know, children are easily bored especially when they have to sit still for hours, and their boredom is usually followed by crying, screaming and everything in between. To make your life and your trip easier, here are some tips for making your holiday travels with kids drama-free.
Choose Wisely What To Bring With You
You will be tempted to bring your whole house with you, but it is crucial to resist this temptation. You definitely need to be prepared for the worst-case scenario, but that doesn’t mean lugging hundred diapers in your carryon. Wherever you’re going, chances are they’ll have shops there, so you can buy most things you need. As for the strollers and other aids, be sure to know that your child will use it, otherwise you can just ditch it. On another note, be sure to bring enough diapers, milk and formula in case your flight gets delayed (as it usually happens during holiday season), so that you don’t have to run around the airport looking for a shop that sells baby essentials.
If you’re going to a distant destination, then flying is inevitable and chances are your children won’t handle it well, at least not the time of being on a plane or waiting for it. This is why you should seriously consider booking overnight flights, during which your kids will be asleep. When you get to the airport, they will already be tired and sleepy and all you need to do is soothe them before getting on the plane. After that, if you’re at least a bit lucky, they’ll sleep through the flight without making a fuss. Of course, there are children that are disturbed by flying with all the noise and the pressure changes, and even the fact they’re tired can’t calm them down. Still, flying overnight is probably your best solution, because your child will get tired faster from all the fussing and calm down.
Make Sure You’ve Got Plenty Of Time
The common rule is that you should get to the airport at least two hours early, but when traveling with children, make it three. Yes, you’ll probably have a lot of free time once you get to the gate, but that’s much better than running around the airport and praying to catch the last call to board. There will probably be more people than usual and lines, as well as delays can be very long, not to mention that your little ones will probably become very nervous while waiting, and time flies even when you’re not having fun. Once you’re through security check and on the gate, everything will be much easier to maneuver, including your kids.
If At All Possible, Avoid Layovers
If you’re traveling nationally, then getting a direct flight won’t be that difficult and spending a few extra bucks to make that happen will be worth it. Your children, as well as you, will take travelling much better if there are no long layovers in between flights. Having to wait in more than one airport leaves more room for all sorts of mishaps and nervousness and you really want to avoid that. If you can’t avoid layovers or are traveling internationally, then do your best to provide enough entertainment for your kids while waiting. Get them something to eat, come up with games they can play, devise a treasure hunt around the gate or simply let them play games or watch movies and cartoons on your mobile devices. It is important to note however, that public networks on airports can be quite unsafe and you can also easily stumble upon geo-blocking that won’t allow you to access Netflix, Hulu or even social media. Be prepared for this situation, as it is very common and consider getting a VPN to protect your privacy and help you bypass restrictions. There are some trustworthy companies like Express VPN that will keep you protected at all times.
Just like with layovers, you need to have a plan for distracting your child during your flight, in case that the plane doesn’t have in-flight entertainment or Wi-Fi. The best way to go is to stack your devices with your kids’ favorite pass-times and tell them they can have it if they behave at the airport and during the boarding. This way, you’re killing two birds with one stone and you’ll be able to enjoy your coffee (or a glass of wine) while your children sit quietly by your side.
It’s a joy seeing your children learning more about the world and you helping them do so, but it isn’t all fun and games. Being prepared is the best strategy you have to make holiday travel with your kids as drama-free as possible. – by Adam Ferraresi.
Though Adam Ferraresi really loves his job of web developer, he’s also quite passionate about his writing, which is always gladly accepted at wefollowtech.com. As every Texan, he loves spending time outside playing sports with his friends. He may have graduated from college a couple of years ago, but he’s already working on his dream job and couldn’t be happier about it, as well as his new life in Dallas.