Sometimes, when you’re preparing for a family holiday, it can seem like a lot to handle. From choosing a location with a manageable flight time, to finding a villa that’s large enough for your whole party, you want to create a holiday that everyone will be able to enjoy. To ease the pressure of organising, here’s a guide on what to remember on your first trip away with the kids.
Top tips when travelling with kids
Store all documents in one place
Keep all boarding passes, passports, travel insurance documents and visas (if necessary) together in one folder. This way, you run less of a risk of losing an important item. Emailing copies to yourself is also a good idea, just in case you lose any important information such as your hotel address. You just need to make sure you have reception on your phone.
Positive mental attitude
Flying can either be an exciting experience or a terrifying one. To prevent the latter, prepare by instilling excitement. Children can be quite perceptive and if you’re scared of flying, they may pick up on these feelings too. Explain to them what it’s like to go through Security and what happens during take-off and landing. Find ways to turn these moments into games, it’ll help you distract them and feel more relaxed with the new experience. Mentally preparing yourself will help you remain positive during stressful moments.
Find ways to turn the dull moments into a game. Whether that’s pretending turbulence is a rollercoaster or trying to spot dragons among the clouds through the window. Keeping your kids entertained will help keep them happy and stop them from running up and down the aisles. If all else fails, bring a tablet or have your phone charged up and ready to go with cartoons and apps downloaded.
If you can, it could be a good idea to choose a flight that correlates with your child’s bedtime. With the harsh on-board lights turned off and a quieter atmosphere, it can be a gentle way to ease a new passenger into flying. Also, if your child is already feeling sleepy, they could settle down quicker. Just remember to bring a light travel blanket or their favourite teddy along with you.
Pack sugary treats
When all else fails, bribes work. There’s nothing sweeter than compromising a full-blown tantrum for a cookie – especially when you’re confined in a small place with a couple of hundred people or so. Chewy and hard boiled sweets can help combat the ear popping pain that comes with the change in cabin pressure. But, if you’re worried the sugar will make your kids hyper, go sugar-free or opt for the natural ingredients that are available to you in duty-free.
Things to remember
With so much to remember, here’s a list of the most common items you may forget:
- A few pairs of shoes including flip flops, evening shoes and walking shoes.
- Cover-ups or a cardigan for unwanted sunburn and for breezy evenings.
- Detangling sprays for knotty, sandy hair.
- Plug adapters and chargers for your electronic devices.
- A camera to capture fun family moments.
- Snap-lock bags for all toiletries. You don’t want them spilling all over your clothes in transport.
- Tote bag for shopping and to split the dirty washing from the clean clothes.
- By the pool activities, such as reading material, colouring books and pens.
- Beach towels if your accommodation doesn’t provide them.
- Aftersun, moisturiser or aloe vera to help replenish your skin.
- Don’t forget the sun cream!