Travel with a family can feel a little overwhelming because you are all in a new situation and having to do things that aren’t part of your normal routine. It can also mean that normal routine like naps and mealtimes can get a little out of whack too. So it is understandable if you can feel a little stressed out at the thought of a family holiday. That being said, there is so much fun to have on a family holiday, with plenty of memories to make and things to see, do, and learn. Children can really benefit from travel, so if you’re able to make it work, then it can be a great thing to do.
Being prepared is the key to family travel, though, as it can really help to reduce your stress levels. So here are some tips and tricks for helping to make family travel go more smoothly.
Allow Extra Time.
Having enough time, and even too much time, to get all done that you want to is really important. There are so many things that can take time when you’re traveling. From getting to the airport, to going through security, and then boarding the plane. But throw in needing to feed a baby, changing a diaper, or having trips to the bathroom, and you can need a lot of extra time. But as long as you have allowed time for this kind of thing, it won’t make you feel overwhelmed or stressed as you won’t have to rush. So plan your time, and then add a little extra, especially when you have younger children.
Pre-Book What You Can.
You are likely to have your plane or train travel booked ahead of time, but being able to book more than that can really help the travel to go well. When you travel by yourself or as couple, you might like getting to your destination, see what is around, and then finding somewhere to stay. But for kids, you need to know exactly where you are planning to get to. So that when you arrive, you can get straight there. Booking your trip with a family travel company could be a good idea as you can book everything, from the lodging to the accommodation, in advance. From there, it can help you to plan your time around what you’ve got planned, so that you can plan for naps and things like that.
Talk About What Is Going On.
Talking to our children is so important at any time of day, but when you’re going traveling, it is important to let them know what the plan is or what things are going to be like. So speak to your kids about what the plan is for your trip and then they can be prepared for what is coming up, for things like standing in line for a while, or that they will have to stay in their seat for a while with a seatbelt on when the plane is in the air.
Food, Glorious Food.
Hungry (or hangry) kids can make a fun trip as a family into a miserable one pretty quickly. So you need plenty of food or snacks to keep them happier. Boredom when traveling can lead to fidgeting and stress, and when kids are in a new environment, that can make things pretty stressful. So having snacks for the kids, not an excessive amount, is always a good idea. It can be a good idea to pack things in your bag that they are familiar with too, as when you’re traveling, they might not want to try some new or foreign foods, especially if they are a little bit of a fussy eater.
Having a plan in place is a good idea to frame your time around. But with children, as you are likely to know, you need to have a degree of flexibility with the plan. Some things are likely to go wrong from time to time, which is why having a bit of flexibility with your plans is really important. There can be things like needing to take a child to use the bathroom and then miss a bus, or losing a toy on the beach. But there isn’t too much to do, other than not stress out as these things can happen. The bottom line is that travel is an adventure, and there can be speed bumps along the way. But the experience that you’re all having together will be irreplaceable.
Are you planning to go anywhere in the school holidays? Do you have a favourite destination?
Note: This is a collaborative post.