10 useful tips when travelling with children

10 useful tips when travelling with children

Travelling with young children can be a very stressful experience. They will be excited, particularly if they are old enough to know that they are going on holiday. Whether you are driving, flying or getting another form of transport, these ten useful tips are always worth bearing in mind, to try and make your travelling experience as stress free for both you and your family as possible.


1)    Come prepared for your baby

baby clothesAlthough very young babies will not necessarily need a lot in terms of toys to keep them entertained, be sure to pack a spare change of clothes that is easy to access, as well as a spare top for you. If you are flying, make sure you pack more than enough nappies. The change in air pressure can often play havoc with a baby’s tummy, so you definitely do not want to run out mid-flight.

 2)    Plan, plan, plan!

to do listStaying organised is the key to success when travelling with children, and this means planning prior to your travels. Make sure you are prepared and are not rushing around at the last minute getting things. Make lists to ensure you have not forgotten anything, and if your children are old enough, involve them in the plans. If they feel they have helped, they are more likely to behave on the journey, as they will know what is expected of them. 

3)    Bring a travel bag for your child

Disney backpackEncourage your child to carry a small travel bag if they are old enough, or a small wheelie suitcase that they can take on a plane with them. Fill this with inexpensive toys and books that they have not seen before, along with one of their existing favourite toys. This will keep them entertained during thee travels as they will new and exciting.

4)    Bring plenty of drinks and snacks

snack boxIf you are travelling for a long period of time, or are getting a flight anywhere, chances are you will have a lot of waiting around. Your children are going to get tired, hungry and dehydrated. It is important to keep their energy levels up, and to give them plenty of fluids, so be sure you have plenty for them to drink, as well as some healthy snacks. Take into consideration, when packing, that you may not be able to take these onto the aircraft.

5)    Ease them into the new time zone

Child AwakeObviously, this does not apply if you are travelling in England; but if you are going further afield, ease them into the new time zone, without disrupting their routine too much. For example, let them stay up a little later than usual, or wake them up slightly earlier. This will help you and them when you arrive, and you can make the most of your time away.

 6)    Have a back-up plan

Delayed boardIt is likely at some point during your travels, that you will face some form of delay; however minor. Make sure you have prepared for this, and are armed with items to keep your children focused during these delays. If you remain calm, this will rub off on your children, who are more likely to mimic your mood.

7)    Give them a project

child taking photoThis is easy if you are travelling with slightly older children. Before you leave, get your children involved and give them a fun project to complete whilst travelling. For example, ask them to document the trip with photos etc. if you have more than one child, get them working on one together. This gives them a goal whilst they are travelling, and they will be keen to show you the result at the end.

 8)    Pack a baby carrier

women carrying babiesObviously this one only applies if you are travelling with babies. Do not rely on your pram or pushchair alone. Be sure to pack a baby carrier, which can leave you with free hands to carry any luggage to and from the plane. Do not assume that you will be able to get your pushchair as soon as you leave the plane, as it may take a while.

Prepare for the take-off and landing

dummiesIf you are flying with your children for the first time, explain to them before they get on the plane that it may make their ears feel funny. Give them a sweet to suck during take-off and landing if they are old enough and explain that this will help. If you are travelling with a baby let them suck on a dummy.

 10)    Be prepared to deviate from your plans

sad childrenIt is essential to make plans when travelling with children and have a good idea of the things you are likely to do during your holiday; however, do not be afraid to deviate from your original plans. You may find that you have unexpected delays, or the weather was not how you planned, and you therefore may be required to adapt your plans. Be prepared for this, and understand that they are not set in stone.

 Finally, remember to…

Have fun

family having fun on holidayTravelling with your children can be so rewarding, as they are getting to see other areas of the world. Whilst it can be stressful, and requires perhaps a little more planning than usual, do not forget to enjoy it. Your children will pick up on your mood, and they do not want to start their holiday feeling upset. Plus, remember that it is your holiday too and you deserve to have fun as well!

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