It’s no secret that traveling with kids can sometimes be challenging, and Jessica Gee of The Bucket List Family faces this challenge on a daily basis while her family of 4 is currently traveling around the world. Here she gives some insider tips for how to eliminate some of the stress that comes while traveling with your kids.
1. Story Time
The days leading up to the trip, tell your kids a bedtime story about their upcoming adventure on a giant airplane to journey off to a new magical land. Help them understand what to expect. Tell them about the airport. Tell them about the plane ride and the new exciting destination. It is crazy how much this has changed things for our children. The day starts off as an exciting adventure and not a stressful burden.
2. Snacks as the Entertainment
Snacks are delicious and make for happy campers. But, they can also be an excellent source of entertainment. Double whammy! Try to prepare snacks that take a lot of time to eat. Picking raisins out of the box or peeling fruit leather off of the wrapper. The longer a snack takes to consume the better!
Try to schedule flights that coordinate with nap times. Sometimes it's worth the extra money to not have a horrible flight schedule. If your toddler/baby can sleep on a plane, then keep them awake until takeoff. But delays happen a lot and your perfectly planned timing usually goes out the window. In this case proceed to step #7.
4. People are helpful
Most people are extremely helpful. A lot of people have travelled with kids and know how hard it can be. People are usually very willing to give you a hand with your stroller going through security or putting your bag in the overhead bin. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Don't be afraid to accept help. And then do the same 10 years down the road when you see a struggling momma. Because it is probably me ;)
This also includes the airline staff. Ask at checkin if the flight is full. If it is not, see if you can get an extra seat in your row. That extra space is the bomb. They often will let you bring a carseat on board if you think your little one will sleep or travel better strapped in.
5. Sit in the back of the plane
It's louder. So if you have a fussy baby, people don't hear. It also helps lull a baby to sleep. Also, I prefer to be closer (but not too close) to the bathroom for potty emergencies.
6. Remember Yourself
Don't forget to think about yourself. Prepare your own snacks and your own entertainment. Standing in the back of a plane rocking your child for an hour is a lot easier if you have a book on tape playing in your headphones :)
7. Don't stress
Traveling is stressful. With kids, its stressful x100,000,000. But everyone feeds off of your energy. If you're stressed, then your kids will feed off of your negative energy. So take some deep breaths and chillax. Safe travels!
Jessica || @thebucketlistfamily