We’ve had the Euros, Wimbledon and the obligatory school sports days. That means only one thing – summer holidays are just around the corner. If you are planning on going away (whether it’s a staycation or somewhere more exotic) the thought of travelling with little ones can be daunting.
Here are our top tips to get you through any journey:
Give them a camera
Whether it’s their own camera, or they simply borrow the camera on your phone, kids love to take pictures. It allows them to be creative, and to explore their surroundings. You may even discover some interesting shots taken from their knee-high view (who knew carpet patterns could be so interesting?).
Don’t worry, be app-y
Once upon a time it was customary to see parents of small children lugging an entire toy box on to a plane as “hand luggage”; nowadays, it’s not so necessary. With the explosion of child-friendly apps will keep kids of all ages entertained for hours. Whether it’s an educational game or the ability to watch their favourite cartoon, there are so many options for hassle-free travel.
The key to stress-free travel with tiny humans is being prepared. That can mean making sure they are wearing the right clothes for the climate (hot children mean fractious children) or simply having suitable medicines on hand. One thing is for certain with kids, the second it’s impossible to locate Calpol or Piriton they will develop a cold and/or hayfever.
Part of the preparation means also making sure you have plenty of batteries for games/toys that require them. What will you do if your phone suddenly dies and you’re unable to charge it? Your once happy and fully engrossed child is now having the mother of all meltdowns and you still have three more hours of travel ahead of you? Investigate purchasing a powerbank, which acts as an external battery charger, to ensure you stay charged for as long as you need.
Avoid the sweets
It’s not our place to tell you when and where you can give your children sweets; however, it makes sense that if you’re going to be stuck in a car, airport or plane with them for any considerable period of time, loading them with sugar is probably not the best of ideas.
Besides, leaving sweets out of the journey itself means you have plenty to use as bribery for later.
Try to relax and take your time
The problem with travelling, especially if you have an itinerary, can mean that you are constantly focussed on time and getting to specific places. However, this just adds to the stress because your time table will not be on the same level as your young child’s.
If possible, arrive earlier to allow extra time to walk leisurely through the airport, allowing your child to soak up the new sights, smells, sounds and experiences. Like it or not, young kids and excitable puppies have quite a lot in common and are always fascinated by new environments!