7 Top Tips For Travelling With Kids
Personally, I love travelling. Be it a 3-day cross country road trip, a train ride to new destinations, or on board a new Airbus A380, I’m a pig in mud. Account for the pre-departure excitement of people watching and shopping in the airport and I’m just about ready to shake things up and report back as being permanently in a state of wanderlust.
7 of our Top Tips For Travelling with Kids
But what I don’t always love about travelling is the packing, the getting stuck sitting next to someone who won’t stop chatting despite my every conceivable indication that I’m simply not in the mood. Or worse, that person in the aisle seat who’s slept for 13 of the 15 hour flight and is making it difficult to make the dash up the aisle to the tiny box they call a bathroom.
But when we start to talk “travelling with kids?” that’s a whole other travelling experience.
Throw in a long haul flight, an unsettled baby, and less than accommodating passengers and you’re about ready to crawl in a hole and die. That or offload the children and ensconce yourself up at the front of the plane with bubbles and a full recline seat. Failing that, because let’s be real (in our dreams), here’s some helpful tips and tricks to ease you through the flight plan.
Get the travel sorted ahead of time. These days you can get a bunch of great travel ready board games and card games for the kids. Pack a bunch of old favourites and some new-to-me games that are guaranteed to keep the kiddos engaged and occupied. Remember to keep the age levels accommodating so that you can have maximum participation!
Need some games to play in the car? Here’s 10 great car games for family car trips.
Pack A Busy Bag
We’re talking mini crayons, little colouring books, mini joke books, finger puppets (the IKEA ones are perfect), sticker sets, little puzzles, blank drawing paper, and even children’s headphones. Just like the travel ready board games, a compact busy bag full of play ideas and craft activities can make the difference between being told, “I’m bored” every 5 minutes or every 20 minutes. That’s 15 minutes of peace right there!
Tip: this is one particular time you’ll definitely find us relying on the use of an iPad or equivalent. Whilst we don’t always endorse electronics, an iPad loaded with their favourite movies, tv shows and games, alongside some great children’s over the ear headphones can be a real game changer.
Be Creative with Airport Layovers
Keep the games, backpacks and electronics for once they’re on the plane and you want them to stop wriggling. Instead be creative with activities, games, people watching and other little pursuits to pass the time during airport stays. For extensive periods, we definitely recommend paying that little bit more to access the kids clubs in airport lounges.
A baby carrier like an Ergo or a Tula will help keep bub happy on your long haul flights. That close skin-to-skin action will soothe an anxious bub, keep them relatively contained to sit and read a baby board book or watch a movie, and also let bub sleep more peacefully close to you.
Fly At Night
It’s often easier to negotiate time zones and international flights with children when flying at night. An evening flight will let your children sleep through for the majority (minimising the stress and the impact to other passengers), whilst also letting them arrive on local time when possible. It’s also a good idea to check that your accommodation has full black out curtains incase your children need to sleep as soon as you arrive. Tip: transition to the new time zone as soon as possible once boarding your flight.
Secure Your Baby Bottle
Ever dropped a baby bottle mid flight? Or had you baby throw it way high? It ends up way down the other side of the plane really quick! Save the angst and get yourself a bottle strap to tether the baby bottle to your arm and ensure it never falls out of your reach!
Overpack On Toiletries
There really is no such thing as too many nappies and baby wipes when it comes to travelling with little ones. On the same token, you can never be too prepared when it comes to packing medicine. Whether you’re flying, driving, or cruising, make sure you’ve got a well stocked First Aid kit and pack your toiletry back with all of the essentials.
Whether you’ve got a newborn, a mild mannered 8-year-old, or toddler twins, these tried and tested tips come highly recommended to guide you through the experience of travelling with kids!