For some, “it’s about the journey, not the destination.” For the unprepared, the journey with little ones can feel like being dragged to your imminent demise, and can set an awful tone for the entire trip. Here are some tips to make the journey easier…
It begins in the home.
You’ve decided to take a family vacay. After you’ve chosen you’re destination, consider your method of travel.
How long is your travel time? This is probably the most important factor to consider. Estimate how long it takes before your child is in meltdown mode and consider your options.
Are you driving? Estimate time to meltdown and plan a short break during this time. Is there an attraction, for example, a park, where everyone can get out of the car and stretch their legs? Let little ones run around for a short period of time, and build this time into your travel time.
Long flight? Consider breaking the trip up and have a short layover between connections. Explore the airport! Take time to watch planes taking off and landing. Walk through the exhibits. Check out the gift shop for cool souvenirs.
Know when to go. Airplane lavatories are small, cramped places. Even one adult has to have a Cirque du Soleil-like contortionists’ ability to navigate it! Can you imagine trying with two people? (Members of the Mile High Club, I salute you). Limiting fluid intake an hour before your flight and taking a potty break just before you board can help.
I personally hate rest stop bathrooms. I think every manner of contagion is lurking on every surface, including but not limited to, the sidewalk. The only thing worse? The gas station restroom. (Don’t get me started) Fortunately, there are companies who know that folk like me exist and they have made products for just such an occasion.
We use the Fisher Price model (see photo below)–two thumbs up!!!
Activities are always great while traveling. Have a variety of options, movies, games, music, coloring are all easily portable options. Snacks are good as well- either pre-packaged or do it yourself before you go.