Traveling with kids can prove very stressful: most parents are afraid to plan holidays when their kids are still very young, but this is a real shame. Traveling with the little ones can be a wonderful experience, in more than one way. Learn how to make it happen with our 10 tips for traveling with kids!
1) Travel at a slower pace
Kids, especially the very young ones, love to explore and they don’t care about times and deadlines for packing, flights and trips. On your first trip with your kids, prepare to live at a slower pace than you usually do. If you plan to see more than one place in a day, be realistic and don’t overdo it: it’s the only way to enjoy a stress-free holiday.
2) Book ahead
You may have planned to go camping or staying in a hotel but it is always a good thing to book ahead. Trying to keep the spontaneity of travelling with your loved is not a good idea. You may arrive to your destination to find that hotels are fully booked and you have to go back in the car with hungry, tired toddlers screaming in the backseat.
3) Equip them with a smartphone or camera
One of the best tips for traveling with kids is giving your kids a child-friendly smartphone or camera and encourage them to look around and observe what captures their attention. You will be surprised by the results! They will bring you snaps of their feet and hands, but you could also find some good ones! It is nice to see the world with their eyes: we can always learn something from them.
4) Do some research before leaving
Let your kids make some projects about the places you are going to visit, before you leave! They can explore maps, find out about the geography, history and culture of your destination. You may also suggest them to read books or watch a film set in the city or cities you are traveling to. In case the food is bound to be very different from their usual meals, help them research on the ingredients and dishes that they might like, and try prepare something similar before leaving!
5) Travel with public transport
Kids love the routine, but they’re always up to doing new things! Travelling on public transports by train, boat, tram and bus can be an amazing experience for them. Whenever possible say no to cabs and use public transport: it’s just another occasion to observe the cities you are visiting and the daily life of their inhabitants.
6) Don’t forget the medicine
Whether because they are out of routine, jet-lagged, or eating junk food, kids often have health problems on holiday. You should always make sure to pack some easy-to-swallow painkillers and antibiotics. Other basic items which should be in your first-aid kit include plasters, a thermometer, antiseptic wipes, sting treatment, antihistamines, and a syrup. It is a good way to avoid being stressed to find an open pharmacy or having to go to the nearest ER, in most cases.
7) Keep them busy
If you’re about to make a long journey take with you a collection of games and toys. Portable board games, tiny puzzles or colouring books or packs of plasticine will help them pass the time on a long car journey or flight.
8) Suggest to keep a travel diary
Writing and drawing can help memorizing and have fun! Get your kids do a list of all the things they’ve seen and done, the food they tried, the strange habits of the locals and the buildings and museums they visited. You can also attach photos of the places they’ve seen. It can be a fantastic way to hold the memories of your journey together!
9) Check your kids’ passports
Passports have a strange habit of running out just days before you have to travel. Check them at least four weeks before leaving, since it may take long to renew them.
10) Book a tour with a kid-friendly guide
The best way to avoid having your kids holding a grudge or winning because they’re bored is to engage them in the history and art of your destination. If you think you might not be up to the task think about booking a tour of the city with a kid-friendly guide! You might be surprised by the things they will learn and how much fun they will have… and you will have too!