09 Jul Travel Tips & Tricks
There are many things that change once we become parents. Leaving the house takes longer, remembering things takes longer, quite frankly everything just takes longer. So when we think of traveling with our little ones, it almost feels like more work then reward. However, with some extra planning and thoughtfulness, I believe travel can be one of the most rewarding experiences we can have with our kids. Patience and planning are key to this process. Will the vacation feel more like a trip? Most likely. But it does not have to be stressful. It can still be fun! and dare I say… WORTH IT!! Sit back, relax, and let the fun travel experience begin…
Travel Helpful Tips
- Be prepared. Schedule flights the best you can when your child is typically in the best mood (probably the morning). Scheduling close to nap time can help as well. Many kiddos fall asleep on planes. Be prepared for delays in flights. Bring extra clothes, toys, formula, breast milk, snacks, etc.
- Bring lots of snacks, games, distractions for the plane. You never know what will please your kids. Feed babies on take off and landing to help their ears or offer a pacifer.
- Unpack once you are at the hotel or place you are staying. Make a little area to change the baby, unpack clothes, toys, ect. Make the room into a mini home away from home. Organization is key to success.
- If you can, think about getting a bigger room, suite, family style hotel room for space and separate sleeping areas. This can help everyone to sleep better. It may be worth the money.
- If in one room, look for a space to shove a pack and play into (bathroom, closet, corner). Everyone sleeps better if we have a little space.
Stick to a flexible schedule
- Vacation is different then home. Flexibility is key to everyones happiness. However, with that being said, kids thrive on structure and routine. Best you can have them acclimate to their new environment successfully by maintaining some consistency.
- Continue the bed time routine as close to the routine at home. (Side Note: I think it is key, if your child is napping twice a day to always allow them that morning nap in a crib or pack n play. I think it sets their entire day up for success)
- One night they may stay up past their bed time, but I would suggest not doing this each and every night. This creates a cycle for being over tired. Maybe if they stay up late one night, they go to bed on time the next night. Again, set them and yourselves up for success.
- This goes with naps as well. Maybe one day afternoon naps are on the go. NO PROBLEM! But then the next day, give them a “normal” nap. Flexibility but also be smart. We can not expect to push our kids everyday and have them not act up. Be realistic.
- If the time change is less then three hours… Try and get them on the new time as soon as possible. Know the first day is sort of thrown off from travel. Get them to bed best you can at a normal time, and start them on the new time zone the next day. They will adjust quickly just like we do.
- If the time change is four hours or more, it may take a day or so to adjust. Adjust their schedules little by little until they are on the new time. Again, they will adjust quickly.
- Be patient. If one day everything is off by an hour, roll with it. You are on vacation. But note, kiddos are much less jaded then we are and tend to roll with punches easier as well!
- Pack n Play placement can be a challenge especially in a hotel. See if the bathroom is big enough for the pack n play or a closet. This can help give them and you your own space.
- Bring a sound machine, two if you need it!
- Practice with the pack n play one night at home if you are worried. Most kiddos do great in them.
- Bring fun and new distractions for airplane or car ride. (We really limit the iPad at home. Then when we travel this is a treat!! Novelty can be very exciting and keep them occupied for a long time!)
- Stick to a normal routine best you can so they feel safe and secure in this new place
- Kids are so resilient and typically deal with travel better then we do, so practice breathing and being calm. They feel our energy.
- Have snacks on hand in hotel room in case they are hungry and you do not want to wait to order food.
- Enjoy. Happiness is contagious. If you are flexible and have an easy going attitude, they will feed off of that.