Tips for traveling with the kids this holiday season
With the holiday season approaching, many of us are in the process of planning big family trips. Whether you’ll be driving a few towns over to spend Thanksgiving with your in-laws, or flying across the country to visit grandparents, getting kids prepared for travel can make the difference between a smooth trip and a big headache.
I surveyed a few moms in our office find out what makes traveling easiest with little ones.
Pack for the worst and hope for the best
You never know what surprises you’ll run into on the road, so prepare yourself by packing an emergency kit, filled band-aids, tissues, medicine, a garbage bag or two, and a change of clothes. You’ll appreciate having the essentials on hand, if a bumpy ride ends with a messy, wet shirt or you discover that your little one gets carsick.
Know your child’s limits
If you plan on driving a long distance, make sure you schedule time to stop and give kids a break. If they’re older, this may just mean finding field or playground to let them play. For younger kids, you may consider breaking the trip up into two days, and staying the night at a hotel.
Bring fun surprises
Make the trip a fun adventure for your kids, by surprising them with a travel gift. If you don’t want to buy something new just for the trip, consider filling a basket with toys your child hasn’t seen or played with recently.
Trains and planes can be cold, so make sure your family is dressed in layers. Packing an oversized scarf and travel pillow and blanket can help ensure kids are comfortable and (if you’re lucky!) ready for mid-trip nap.
Pass the time with fun distractions
Travel games, magnetic toys, songs, books, and (if you have the technology) favorite movies, can help break up long afternoons. Keep activities varied, so when they get bored with one, you’ll have something new ready to go.
What are the travel tips that have saved you on long trips with little ones?
Megan Maguire (twitter: @megan_maguire) is an Account Manager at Mom Central Consulting. An avid traveler, she’s happiest when she’s discovering the best restaurants and attractions in her neighborhood – or across the globe.