With the holiday season in full swing, many families are making plans to visit loved ones across the country. While traveling during the holidays can be stressful, travel with kids can be even more difficult. Thankfully it doesn’t have to be. With just ten simple tips, your next family trip can be an enjoyable experience for everyone!
10 Tips For Easier Travel With Kids
Plan For Extra Travel Time: When you have kids everything takes longer, going through airports, getting checked into your hotel room, extra trips to the bathroom, etc. Building in extra time for these and other traveling time sucks will make your family feel less stressed while on the road.
Travel On Off-Peak Days And Times: Travel during the slower times whenever possible. This will help make your trip through the airports quicker as they will be less crowded and planes are not full giving children a little more wiggle room. If traveling by car it will help reduce the delay caused by potential traffic jams. You can also make the trip easier on your children, and yourself, if you travel while they are sleeping.
Use the Bathroom: Make sure to have your little ones use the bathroom before you leave home, board a plane or get on the highway. You never know when a delay can happen causing it to be awhile before the next opportunity to “go”. You don’t want your child to feel distressed if they should need to use the potty and one is not readily available.
Keep Your Kids On Schedule: We all know that our kids are happiest when they are kept on their regular schedule. This is especially true when on vacation. The better you are at sticking to a regular routine for meals and bedtime the happier your family will be. Not to mention it will make life easier once you are home again as you won’t have to work as hard to get back to normal.
Travel In Comfy Clothes: When traveling it’s always best to wear something that breaths. It will make you and the kids feel more comfortable, no one likes to be stuck in something that feels restrictive for hours on end. You may want to consider dressing in layers as they can be removed or added again as the temperature changes. Don’t forget to bring an entire changes of clothes for your children in case of an accident or spilled drink.
Keep Kids Busy: The attention span of most young children is 30 minutes or less. Having a variety of activities for the kids to do will help keep little hands busy and happy. Pack a small backpack with: books, crayons, coloring books, their LeapPad2 or iPad, and a few small “travel toys” giving them a variety to choose from.
Let Them Burn Off Steam: It’s hard for kids to be confined to a small space, keep seated and stay still for hours while traveling. Giving your children the opportunity to stretch their legs whether it’s at a highway rest stop, or in the airport terminal will make traveling easier on everyone.
Pack A Healthy Snack: Instead of filling the kids up on sugar during long trips, give them some healthy alternatives. Need some ideas? The following healthy snacks will travel well: veggie sticks, fresh fruit (apples, bananas, or grapes), dried fruit, crackers, cheese sticks, and Cheerios.
Don’t Over Pack: There are lots of things that could make your trip more comfortable. However, it’s important to decide what is truly a necessity for your family while on vacation, and what is not. You don’t want to be lugging around extra suitcases through a crowded airport while trying to keep track of your very excited children.
Have Something To Chew On: Don’t forget to bring something for the kids (and yourself) to chew on or drink during takeoff and landing. This simple trick will help their sensitive ears avoid the painful popping that can occur. Older kids can chew gum or suck on hard or chewy candies. The younger travelers may do better with a juice box or chewy candy. Infants can be breastfed or given a bottle during a takeoff and landing to help keep their little ears from becoming painful.
Whatever your travel plans are, following even a few of these simple tips can help keep your kids (and you) happy and content making your next family vacation a pleasant experience for everyone.
What are some of your favorite ways to help your travel with kids a much more enjoyable experience?
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