The summer has finally arrived in all its glory and with it comes the prospect of travelling with the little ones in your life. It might be a long road trip to spend Christmas with grandparents or a flight to an exotic holiday location overseas.
Whatever the case, you can bet your bottom dollar that every parent will be asked ‘are we there yet?’ usually within 10 minutes of leaving the house! And so here are some top tips for making travelling with kids this summer as smooth a ride as possible.
Are We Nearly There Yet? Travelling With Kids Made Easy
1. Personalised Travel Packs
Our first tip is to make sure each child has their own special travel pack. Each bag is specially packed with a selection of snacks and goodies designed to distract your little one. This top secret mission should be completed prior to the journey.
Visit the $2 shop and stock up on a variety of toys, crafts, games or puzzles. For young kids it’s quantity and not quality that counts so low-cost, disposable items from the bargain shops are definitely the way to go. Plus if something gets lost or broken en route then it’s no big deal.
Snacks are important too. A jet plane or pineapple lump pulled out at just the right time could make the difference between a full-blown tantrum and a hassle-free check-in.
2. Bring Your Own Device
A long plane ride or car journey is not the time for being all high and mighty about the perils of too much screen time! An iPad that’s been loaded up with lots of games, new shows or movies is an absolute must.
And don’t make the basic mistake of not bringing a charger! There is no tantrum quite like the one which will result if an iPad conks out half-way through the journey. And your child won’t be too happy either!
3. Make A Game Of It
Timeless games like I Spy, 20 questions and guess my number are always useful especially as they don’t require any equipment to play. However, be prepared to play them non-stop for hours on end and ALWAYS let your child win.
4. Timing Is Everything
Try to plan your journey to suit the natural rhythms of your child or children. Early morning starts will suit babies and toddlers that still have a morning or lunchtime nap. And for older children an early evening departure means that they‘re probably already tired and so are more inclined to sit quietly.
If you’re heading off overseas on a long-haul plane ride, then a night flight is definitely worth considering. Even the most energetic of kids has to doze off at some stage and a night flight means you’re not wasting a day of your holiday travelling. Get your child into their pj’s at the airport and if you can bring along their own pillow or favourite cuddly toy for extra comfort and familiarity.
Travel Made Easy
Long plane rides and car journeys can be a bit like giving birth: immediately after with the full horror of the wailing and screaming still fresh in your mind you vow never again! However, with the passage of time you find your views softening until you start to contemplate doing it once more!
Use the tips we’ve identified here to make it as smooth a ride as possible for the whole family. And check out our great Family travel articles for lots more advice.