My husband and I love to travel and having kids has never stopped us (only money has, haha!) Travel can be an eye-opening experience for children of all ages: there’s new foods, experiences and sights, not to mention quality family time, have you heard about the school of life? You don’t have the usual pressures of home, no work, no school, no lunches to make, homework to do. It is a time for the whole family to enjoy every moment seeing the world and create a lifetime of memories along the way. Isn’t that the point of travel in the first place?
Our family recently took a little break from Sash & Belle and travelled to Thailand and Singapore for some great adventures and family time. We have two children Mr 7 and Miss 10.
Here are some tips I have for travelling with kids 5 and over:
- If you’re travelling a long distance with kids eg Europe considering staying overnight or longer somewhere like Singapore. We had 2 nights and a day in Singapore and it was not enough time just because there is soooo much to do. (Our next blog will provide some great info on Singapore, so check back for that).
- Get them involved in the planning, even in a small way the more you involve them the more interested in the holiday they will be. However don’t overload your itinerary especially in the first couple of days, everyone will be getting over the flight, jetlag and starting to relax.
- Let your children choose between several activities instead of giving them no direction whatsoever. There will be times when they will have to do “boring adult things” but if you mix it up with the activities they are interested in then everyone should be happy. I find during those “boring adult activities” if set up your expectations of them before you do the activity and you make a game of things eg at a Museum see how many statues with just heads they can find then it makes it fun for everyone.
- Choose restaurants that cater to children. You might enjoy 5 star dining but I can guarantee they don’t have chicken nuggets on the menu.
- Loosen up on your holiday, allow your children to use their iPads as much as they want on long haul flights or during a bout of jet lag. When you’re traveling, let it go. Eat ice cream every day, let the kids YouTube for an extra hour in the morning so you can have a sleep in, allow yourself to relax and not enforce all the rules you keep while you’re at home. Just remind your kids that normal rules will be back after the trip ends.
- Count your carry-on bags regularly, in all the chaos of getting off a plane and catching another one, items can be lost, keep them contained in a bag – the Sash & Belle Perry tote is a great travel bag for Mums travelling.
- Consider if your family will be comfortable staying in a hotel room all together, if not consider getting a 1-2 bedroom apartment or connecting rooms.
- Choose a hotel/resort with a kids club and entertainment for children. On rainy days or times when you just want to read your book in the sun uninterrupted but the kids are keen to play, send them to kids club!
I could go on, but this is a good start. Start planning your next trip, look for great travel deals on Luxury Escapes or TripADeal. Travelling is not as expensive as it used to be.