Travelling with kids is an experience in its own. For some no matter if it’s their first trip with the first child, or the fifth, travelling with children is always daunting. Whereas, for some, the first may not be as smooth, but the others are much well-planned. So, you must swear by check-lists, pack-well, get travel insurance and have lots of fun.
Here are a few points you should keep in mind when travelling internationally with kids:
What you pack and how much of it depends on the age of your child and your destination. But, make sure to pack the essentials. Another valuable packing tip is to divide all your belongings into separate bags. This gives them a sense of responsibility and independence. Also, do not forget to dress the children comfortably for the weather and terrain will be happier in a new environment. With all the gear available, there’s no excuse for dressing toddlers in ski-suits four sizes too big, forgetting their gloves, or leaving them barefoot on a beach where sea urchins lurk. Moreover, an emergency kit with basic medicines & supplies and prescribed medicines, if any, can come in handy with kids.
Long Flights & Wait Times
It’s the dreaded thought of hours in the airport, and then hours on the plane, that put many off the idea of traveling until their kids are older. But, you must know and accept in advance that you won’t be relaxing with a book or movie on this or any flight for quite some time and then you’re halfway there. Pre-boarding and waiting for check-in can call for your kids to be irritated, hungry and cranky. Let them play around and eat. Also, don’t rush to get in the airplane first, let your child be free and board once the queues are shorter.
International Travel Insurance
Unfortunate events such as baggage loss, passport loss, a medical emergency or an accident can affect your travels, whether for business or leisure. Moreover, when you’re travelling with kids, their safety is of utmost importance and you do not want to be helpless in an emergency. International travel insurance for your family will protect you from such perils by ensuring that you are not left stranded in any emergency. To make the insurance purchase process less cumbersome, you can buy travel insurance online as well.
Strollers are Your Friend
Car seats and strollers are not counted as bags and can be checked at the gate. Airports are overcrowded and if yours is a toddler, then they’re unpredictable, fearless and fast. You cannot chase him all the time (and not to forget, leaving your bag unattended even to run after a kid on the loose is not recommended), so use a stroller to keep your where you can see him/her until you step on the plane.
Give Them a Camera and Encourage Them to Keep a Travel Journal
Giving toddlers their own (robust, child-friendly) camera raises their spirits to observe their surroundings and focus on what interests them. The results from their knee-high view can be astonishing. Also, Get your kids drawing and listing things they’ve seen and interesting foods they’ve tried. Who knows, this might also encourage them to try different foods. Collecting postcards from places you visit and asking them to write themselves a message on the back means they can reach adulthood with a library of memories all their own.
Check your Passports
Since, last-minute passport renewal costs are astronomical, make sure that you have a passport bag and a documents check-list when you’re travelling internationally. You do not want to go back home from the airport.
Research Hotels Carefully
The hotel choice can make or break a vacation with kids. Choose “kid-friendly hotels” from the pull-down to start your search and remember to inform the hotel that you have kids. Also, ask other parents you know for their recommendations; you’ll want to know how family-friendly a property really is before you book. Be sure to request a room with a mini-fridge. Not all rooms are equipped, but most hotels can bring one in. Since, children are unpredictable and they can feel hungry any time, you can fill the fridge with fresh fruit, cheese sticks and yogurt for an affordable, anytime snack.
The Big Picture
While you’re planning a vacation – so you’re supposed to enjoy yourself! Traveling with babies is much more relaxing for me when you just kept it simple. You must realize that the kids will get older and you’ll be able to do more over the years, but while they are babies, limit any event planning and don’t expect too much. Just go with the flow.
By travelling with your kids, you are giving them something that can never be taken away… Experience, Exposure and a Way of Life. So, make sure you travel safe and planned.
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