When planning a family vacation, parents often get a little-stressed thinking of all the extra things that need to be packed and how to keep the kids engaged during the long trip. But parenting during a family trip doesn’t have to be an amazing experience. We selected a short list of travel tips to help you plan and manage your vacation with the family.
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Try to bring only what you really need. If you’ve been on a similar trip with your kids in the past, think of what they wanted, what you didn’t use the last time and what you wished you had brought but didn’t.
This list might be a little different for every family, but some things like medicine, special clothes for each outing and any vacation-specific items should be must for every family with kids. One thing to bring along is baby wipes. They can be used to clean kids at any age, yourself and even the rooms you’re staying. Next, find out what is the right time can make your family vacation more enjoyable for everyone.
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Leaving at the right time can make your trip a whole lot smoother, whether you’re flying, driving or taking a train to your destination, well, you can’t foretell delays or cancellations with flights, but try to organize your trip around the family’s schedule.
Try to plan your leaving hours before your kids’ naptime and bring along their sleeping quilts or other favourite items they use for comfort. Sure, they’ll be thrilled about the trip at first, but as it gets closer to nap time, most kids fall into their usual schedule and rest for a while. Keep this in mind while planning your trip with kids.
How to keep your kids occupied during the trip? You’ll need to bring along a few pastimes and packing some of their favourites is reasonably a good idea. Especially if you’re on a long trip, this stops the kids from getting bored too soon and gives them something new to do at frequent intervals.
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A compact DVD player in the car can also go a long way to keeping the kids from getting too bored and then demanding the parents to be in charge of entertaining them. The old school days of playing games with the kids in the car may seem like old, but even the most technologically savvy kids still enjoy some good old-fashioned interactive car games. Entertaining the kids by playing games is a great way to keep them from getting annoyed at the long car ride as well from fighting with each other.
With all the accessible mobile technology, some even given to us by our jobs, the feeling of wanting to do work when you’re on holiday can come naturally to some. Instead, struggle that feeling and leave your job back at home when you go on your journey. Do you really need to have your BlackBerry going off every 15 minutes while you’re trying to sightsee with the children? It’s suggested to turn it off or simply leave it at home.
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Laptops can come in handy when moving, but if you think you’ll end up doing the job on it while you’re away, then don’t bring it. Most hotels have computers for customers to use if you really need to look up directions, local weather news or sightseeing information. The very reason you’re on holiday is to use time with the people most important to you, so don’t waste it by dividing your time between work and family.
The most important family travelling tip to be flexible, travelling can be stressful, so having a good attitude will help your children keep a good attitude as well. If something doesn’t go right, adjust. If the place you were travelled to is closed, don’t just return to the hotel room. Take the chance to walk around and find something else to do that wasn’t on your scheduled list of actions. You may find something new you didn’t expect to see, and you might even make a holiday memory while you’re at it.