Are you traveling to visit loved ones this holiday season with your children in tow? Traveling with kids can be a daunting task, even for seasoned parents. Here are some tips to keep the whole family sane and happy at the final destination!
Pack snacks that you know your family members will enjoy. Bring some healthy snacks (nuts, fruit squeezers, trail mix) and as well as some treats (cheese crackers, special juice, etc.).
Don’t want to entertain your kids for the.whole.time while traveling on a long road trip or cross-country flight? Travel while they sleep as much as possible. If your kids are light sleepers, then this tip is not for you. However, if your kids are champion sleepers, try it!
During breaks, keep kids active! Let your kids run around and get their energy out when stopping for food and bathroom breaks during road trips. On flights where you have assigned seats, wait to board the flight until everyone else has been called. Why be on the plane with small children 30 to 45 minutes longer than necessary?! That way, they will be more tired and likely to sleep later on in the trip.
When flying, give toddlers and infants something to drink or suck on during the descent such as a bottle or a pacifier to distract them from their ears popping. Have a snack, lollipop or gum ready to give to older children.
Use electronics as needed, and know how they affect your children. Does playing their favorite iPad game wind them up or calm them down? Do what works for your kids and family!
If you are flying, make sure that each child has their own backpack with their essentials in it. This will keep them from having to ask mom or dad for anything that they need and will open up more space in your carry-on or personal item as well. If you are driving, separate bags for activities and snacks ahead of time, so that you can pull out individual bags as needed. Bring a cookie sheet for younger children to keep coloring books, crayons and small toys from escaping to the floor.
What to Keep On-Hand by Age
Infants & Toddlers – diapers, wipes, plastic bag for extra stinky diapers, snacks, 1 to 2 changes of clothes and small toys
Preschool & School-Aged – snacks, change of clothes, I-spy books, sticker books, drawing notebook and small toys, water bottle
Middle & High-Schoolers – water bottle, snacks, travel pillow, Mad-Libs, audio books from Audible or the library, extra charging device for electronics
Don’t forget that the things that go wrong often make the best memories!