Are you traveling with kids this summer? Here 8 helpful tips to make your travel less stressful.
Traveling with kids is extremely stressful, adding a holiday, a busy airport, or even your own car into the mix only intensifies your stress, however; traveling doesn’t have to be as stressful as you may think. I’ve traveled locally and abroad with +1 kid or more so I have some experience and insight on how to help reduce your travel stress.
Leave early. Kids are notorious for making you later and delaying the whole process. If you can pack up the car (or your suitcases) overnight will help avoid last-minute rushes. Also, check off things you can do the night before to make the leave much easier; if you have pets arrange for their care, set timers, and take care of anything else you may need to do before you leave. The fewer distractions your child has the easier the process will be if your unable to prepare in advance be sure to get up extra early and enjoy a meal a happier child makes an easier travel experience.
Pull over often. There’s nothing like heading on your way and hearing the “I have to go to the bathroom” speech, and half the time you stop they don’t even have to go. When traveling long trips, it’s important to stop for bathroom and even times to get out and stretch. If you have little ones be sure to plan for activities to keep them entertained; books, games, movies, tablets, coloring sheets, etc. It is super important to get out and stretch or walk around when you’re confined to small spaces and plan for stops whenever you can.
Bring items that remind them of home. If your child has a favorite stuffed animal or blanket they sleep with every night do NOT forget to bring it! No one likes a fussy child and having something that reminds them of home will help soothe them and make overnight stays easier.
Eat at kid-friendly restaurants with play places. While eating fast food may not be ideal, it is a great way for kids to relax and unwind while letting off some energy.
Pack plenty of snacks and drinks. One way to save money and stretch out the time between meals is to pack snacks and drinks. By packing your own snacks and drinks will lessen rest stop and gas station trips to purchase overpriced snacks. Plus snacks keep kids busy and full until you can stop off for your next meal or on long continuous flights. If your traveling by car a great tip is to pack a bag for each child filled with their favorite toys, movies, games, and snacks if you can make it accessible to them it would be extremely helpful to save time and your sanity.
Don’t forget the activities! This should be a no-brainer but sometimes we tend to forget about these. Be sure to pack some small toys, coloring books, games, printable activities, gaming devices and movies to help ease the boredom kids have. If your child is old enough to take care of their own things back each kid a bag with their things in it so they do whatever they want when they please. Drawstring backpacks are perfect for holding a lot of stuff and makes carrying easier.
Don’t forget the extras. You never know when an accident or breakdown is going to happen so being prepared is always the best option. Be sure to pack an extra change of clothing for each person to store in your car or carry one for easy access.
Make a list.
If you’re a visual person or your one who always end up forgetting something lists is an excellent tool in ensuring you’ve packed everything you need or check off everything you need to do before you leave. You can create your own list or check online to print off a printable checklist. Just because you don’t think you need something doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pack it, it always pays to be prepared. Don’t forget to print out your travel itinerary, plane tickets, and other important information. When creating a travel itinerary be sure to add in lots of stops and additional things in case plans change, however, stick to the plan as much as possible and schedule open sessions if you find something on the way you want to do.
Traveling anytime soon? Get our checklist of commonly forgotten items and print yours so you don’t forget anything. Click here to print our checklist!