Do you want to travel and are hesitant to travel with kids? Feel at ease and start packing! Here are loads of expert tips to help you enjoy traveling with kids more!
5 Tips for Help Boost Your Mindset When Traveling With Kids
Some of these tips may sound contradictory. Travel is not one-size-fits-all. This is one of the top reasons that we recommend booking with a travel advisor. Ryan and Shayne can help you make sure you have the best trip for you!
1. Expect the Unexpected
Prepare and be flexible.
2. Take it Slowly
Don’t think, “there’s too much to do.”
Think, “There’s too much to miss if we rush past everything.”
3. Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable
Traveling with children can be scary.
Don’t be afraid, though. Prepare, act, adapt.
Resilience is key to happiness. Help yourself and your kids build resilience.
4. Maintain Situational Awareness
Listen to episode 35 on travel safety and security for tips on maintaining situational awareness.
5. Be an Example When Traveling With Kids
Exemplify going with the flow.
Traveling with kids is an investment in their future character.
Do your kids see you as fellow travelers through life? Or do they see you as authority figures trying to ruin their lives?
16 General Tips for Traveling with Kids
Lots of planning and preparing.
1. Love and Logic
Check out www.loveandlogic.com for all their available resources. Also, check your
2. Practice Traveling With Kids at Home
Let them get used to not getting their way at home. See Love and Logic
3. Practice in Grocery and Department Stores
Tell them, No, and let them get used to what happens when you tell them No. Refer to Love and Logic.
4. Practice Yawning and Swallowing
Try some gum or a bottle.
5. In Crowds, Always Keep Them Where You Can See Them
Or keep them in front of you with your hands on their shoulders or holding their backpack
6. Practice Walking and Strolling
Malls, zoos, parks. Get them used to either walking or riding.
7. Invest in a Premium Stroller
Do you need to take your car seat?
8. Prepare Allergic Needs Cards
Find out what you need to say in the destination language and have it on cards and on your phone.
9. Include the Kids In the Vacation Planning
Planning a vacation is half the fun. Let them in on the fun. They get vested. They have an idea of what’s coming and what to expect.
10. Bring a Few familiar Items on the Trip
Snacks (low sugar, no caffeine), blanket, stuffed animals, medications. Things that feel like home.
11. Pack Hydration Aids
Whether it’s in the park or the city—and especially on airplanes—you’ll get dehydrated. Keep water handy. Pack Gatorade or something. May restaurants and airplanes will serve highly filtered water instead of mineral water. You need electrolytes.
12. Don’t Overpack
Give them their own backpack or carry-on so that you don’t bring too much.
13. Have them carry some of their own stuff
And help them pack, but don’t pack for them. If they’re enjoying the responsibility of carrying their own luggage, they’ll be less likely to have you carry them. They’ll also be part of “the pack” and less likely to wander.
14. Arrive early When Traveling With Kids
Everything will take longer than expected.
Don’t give the extra stress of running late.
Calm and focused
15. Let Them Lead the Way
Let them lead the way to the ticket counter, to and through security, then to the gate. That keeps them in front of you where you can see them. It helps them focus on getting to the destination instead of wandering about.
16. Avoid Too Much Hotel-Hopping
It’s exhausting and you increase your chances of losing something.
5 Tips for Traveling with Older Kids
1. Offer Them a Journal
Have them practice a little journaling before the trip. Think of scrapbooking on the go.
2. Get Them a Camera
Find them a camera appropriate for their age.
See the trip through their eyes!
3. Learn the Language Together
Just enough to order food and find the loo. This also vests them in the trip and planning. Learning a new language is excellent for our brains. It’s fun!
4. Schedule Periodic Meetups
Teens may want to venture off on their own. Most theme parks are safe places to let them experience and enjoy some independence. Consider allowing them to wander, but have frequent meetup times.
Make regrouping about the activities, not checking up on them. Teens want to be independent, but they’ll also be happy to let you pay for lunch!
If you’re not comfortable, don’t ruin your trip by putting yourself into a situation where you’ll worry about them instead of enjoying the trip. Here are a few great excuses for regrouping:
- photo ops
5. Turn on Location Sharing Apps
Maybe they’ll forget and leave it on after the trip.
Don’t stare at your phone, though.
6 Tips for Traveling With Kids On Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
1. In Big Planes, Try to Book the Middle Aisle
If the flight isn’t full, the airline may give you all 5 seats to your family.
2. Otherwise, Give Them the Window Seat
3. Bring Surprises
Keeping them from getting bored. Bring a gift for a long flight or drive.
4. Invest in Noise-Cancelling Headphones or Earbuds
So they can keep the volume lower.
5. Always bring wired headphones/earbuds
6. Bring Gum and Bottles When Traveling With Kids
Anything to help swallow and pop ears.
Fake yawn. It’ll make you look relaxed, and yawns are contagious.
5 Tips for Traveling With Kids to Theme Parks and Cities
1. At Theme Parks, Help Them Get to Know Cast Members
Help them recognize cast members and feel comfortable speaking with them. They are trained to do this, so they can immediately assist when parents get lost.
2. Have Contact Info on Their Bodies
Laminated on lanyard
Laminated and pinned
No given names, but have mom, dad, nana, papaw + phone number. Don’t forget country codes.
3. Schedule Downtime When Traveling With Kids
Rest, don’t run 24/7
4. Schedule Hydration Breaks
Set a time on your phone or watch. Stay hydrated.
5. Use Public Transportation
Who doesn’t love busses and trains?
Be careful on subways.
Teach them to read the map and schedule while waiting on the ride.
Listen for announcements in foreign languages
Enjoy the Journey
What are your biggest concerns when traveling with kids?
Please let us know in the All Things Travel Podcast Facebook group!
Start Making Your Magical Memories!
Ryan and Shayne are both Travel Advisers with Creating Magic Vacations, an authorized Disney Vacation Planner. Feel free to reach out to us for a free quote and to start making magical memories.
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Next on All Things Travel, Episode 38: What happens in Vegas, stays on All Things Travel!
Previously on All Things Travel, Episode 36: So you wanna go to Disney. Now what?