It can be a lot of fun to travel with happy and healthy kids. When they are uncomfortable, bored or sick, however, it’s a different story. That’s why it’s essential to plan ahead for your next family vacation to be prepared for all of the things life throws at moms. Here are 5 tips to keep in mind.
The first thing to do is make sure you choose child-friendly accommodations. Many hotels and resorts claim to be “family friendly,” but you should make inquiries to find out if this is truly the case.
For starters, make sure your room has a fridge so you can store snacks and beverages. This is key for new moms who will need to prepare bottles. This can make a big difference, as you can store all kinds of goodies in even a small fridge. You can stock up on juices, yogurts, containers of milk and various cold treats. A microwave is extremely helpful for heating up leftovers after the pool or before the fireworks show.
If you have young kids, try to find a hotel that has facilities to keep them occupied. Some hotels have nurseries or playgrounds on the premises. These are all features to look for when searching for the right accommodations.
If your kids are prone to motion sickness, try to consider this beforehand. You cannot always predict what might set off this condition in a child. Driving, flying or boat rides can all cause motion sickness in children (and adults, for that matter).
It’s best to be prepared by always carrying some motion sickness remedies that are suitable for kids. You can also prepare by carrying a plastic bag, a change of clothing and wipes in case someone does get sick.
Make sure kids have plenty of diversions for the trip. Whether it’s going to be a drive or plane ride, it’s a good idea to bring both paper and electronic entertainment. Download some good movies they can watch on a phone or tablet device.
It’s also a good idea to bring some old-fashioned diversions such as paperback books and coloring books. A new pack of crayons can be quite fun – and for only a few dollars a pack it’s not hard on the budget. All of these items will all help the hours spent traveling pass by faster.
Traveling with a baby presents some special challenges for which you must be prepared. If you’re flying, have some containers of baby food to carry on the plane. Keep it in the original container, and you should be fine taking it through security.
You should also consider whether or not to bring a stroller on board. This can be difficult to navigate down crowded aisles. If you do want to have a stroller, it’s best to use a lightweight variety, such as an umbrella stroller. There are also convenient travel systems that make it easy to fold and unfold a stroller and accessories.
A baby carrier can work wonderfully in place of a stroller. It is less bulky and can fold up much easier if needed.
I also recommend checking to see if there is the possibility of renting a stroller or car seat at your destination. This so you won’t have to haul through the airport and security. Believe me, when you have a baby (or a few kids) you’ll need all the extra hands you can get-especially while traveling.
Try to stick as much as possible to routines to which your children have become accustomed. You may enjoy changing your meal schedules around so you can eat in certain restaurants, but keep in mind children are not as flexible.
If you’re going to be eating later than usual, make sure you have some tasty snacks at hand. If kids are used to napping, try to fit this into your daily routine. Tired kids are no fun to be around and this can spoil your vacation.
Also, take time changes into consideration. When we went to Kauai, Hawaii a few years ago our kids were so unaccustomed to the time change that all they wanted to do was sleep. Making some time for them to adjust made all the difference.