As a mother of a young child, I can appreciate the challenges and fun of traveling with young children. I remember the excitement I felt in exposing my daughter to an airplane for the first, and then the nervousness kicked in…. will she scream all the way to London?? What if I didn’t bring enough diapers? What if the water there is bad??? I was very happily surprised that my daughter turned out to be an excellent traveler, and we had a great trip! I believe any child could be a great traveler.
Several sun destinations today have many amenities that cater to families with young children. Airlines have something to offer for the kids as well. The best way to make sure that your children have the best time traveling, is by talking to a travel agent – especially one who’s been through it. So, based on my experiences, I have the following tips for those of you who are planning a trip with the kids…
Get PASSPORTS for the kids as soon as the word “vacation” pops in your head. Whether you’re traveling to Italy, or Little Italy in NY, get the kids their passports. The government and airline rules are always changing. While some say you can travel with just a birth certificate, I believe the best, fastest and easiest way to get anywhere nowadays is with a passport. You’ll love your child’s first passport picture…it’s sure to be a classic.
Next, if you’re traveling with an infant, I know that you can never pack too many diapers, formula, clothes and toys! But most likely, you’ll either run out of supplies or forget something. There are some sun destinations that offer baby packages which you can pre-order through your travel agent that will have a fresh supply of baby items waiting for you at your destination. I also recommend not packing many toys. The baby will be occupied enough with the new surroundings, and many accomodations have toys that babies can play with at their mini or baby-clubs.
Ah, the plane ride. The worry of every parent of a toddler. The screaming, the crying, the air sickness….. But it doesn’t have to be. A quick tip…get a portable DVD player, with some favorite shows. Crayons and paper. Get a set of headphones, or buy one off the plane, the kids will want to fiddle with the TV or radio stations that runs out of the seats. I advise giving toddlers their main meal before you get on the plane…they may be picky with the airline food (as a normal human is). Take your toddler to the cockpit and have them check out the pilot and all the cool switches…that will definitely put a smile on his/her face. Also, if you can, arrange to fly later in the day closer to bedtime. The child will fall asleep faster on the plane. Also, pack a few NEW unwrapped toys to surprise your child with. Every hour or so, rotate it with a new toy. That will keep them occupied for a good while. Take gripe water onboard with you in case your child feels sick on the plane.
Plan your trip. Make a schedule of what to do once you’re in destination. However, I recommend leaving a few days in between blank. Most parents are so worried that their kids will be bored and start acting up. But in most cases, the boredom is good as it leads to quiet time, creativity and calm enjoyment for everyone. If you include activities every single day and it fills up every hour, your child will definitely get cranky.
If you’re going south, let your travel agent know that you’re looking for accomodations that cater to children. Most agents will know to look for places that have children’s clubs, activities, and swimming pools. However, your travel agent could also make any special requests for your child. Travel agents will have the pull with certain places because of their business relationship, and you may be able to get your requests approved because of it. No such luck if you’re planning to book online on your own.
GET INSURANCE, if you don’t have any. If you’re going on an all-inclusive trip, get all-inclusive insurance coverage. If you’re going to the United States, I recommend getting medical insurance, if nothing else. You never know what’ll happen. Especially with children.
These are just a few tips. I hope they help you with planning that great family getaway that you all deserve. Please email me at email@example.com
, if you have any questions, or would like some more advice. Have a great journey!
The world is a book, and those who do not travel, read only a page.
About Becky Ramdeholl a
Stay at Home/ Work from home Mom:
An avid traveller, and a long-time dreamer of European castles, Becky Ramdeholl has been involved in the travel industry one way or another, as a traveller or travel consultant.
She worked in a travel agency for 4 years, specializing in only Cuba - air only and packages, car rentals, and accomodations only. Her Cuban-related travels have taken her to such destinations as: Havana, Varadero, Holguin, Cayo Coco, Santiago de Cuba, Ciego de Avila, Vinales Province and Cayo Levisa/Pinar del Rio Province. Business travel has also taken Becky to Cancun and the Mayan Riviera, Freeport (Nassau), Dominican Republic, and Guyana.
Personal trip destinations include Slovakia, Switzerland, England, Austria, Germany, and Italy. Every Fall, Becky loves to go hide in the beautiful Ontario woods amongst the coloring leaves, so she can recommend great accomodations for a weekend getaway!
Contact: TIL American Express Travel
348 Lakeshore Road E., Suite #4
Mississauga, Ontario L5G 1H5