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No matter if you’re traveling by plane, train or automobile, you can enjoy a stress-free and organized vacation with the kids! Follow these tips and you’ll be on the road to organized family travel.
Try to plan your travel at a time that works best for your child. If you’re traveling by car, it might be helpful to start your trip closer to your child’s naptime. Avoid long layovers or late-night flights if traveling by air. Also, when boarding a plane, consider having one adult board with the luggage and the other wait until the last boarding call to get on the plane with the child — that means less time strapped into a seat for your child. Keep travel documents for each family member together and put one person in charge of keeping track of them.
Involve your child in as many aspects of the trip as possible, from selecting the destination to choosing which items she’d like to bring. When preparing to pack, you should pre-select clothing options that are appropriate for the destination, then let your child choose which ones she’d like to bring. This allows you to have control over what’s packed, but she has a say in what she will wear. Pack complete outfits (top, bottom, undergarments) in clear, reclosable bags so that it’s easy for your child to have everything she needs to get dressed each day.
Proper preparation should be made in advance to ensure kids don’t become unruly and impatient when faced with delays. Take along an assortment of favorite toys, crayons, books, snacks and a bottle of water for each child. Some parents like to bring new toys when traveling with kids — the novelty may keep them entertained for longer periods of times. Think about quiet toys if traveling by airplane. Give kids travel bags that they can pack with their own favorite things — and that they can carry.
Pack a kit with first aid supplies and other necessities that is always easy to access when you’re traveling. Store it either in an outer pocket of a suitcase or in your carry on or day bag. Consider carrying a small supply of the following items: bandages, pain reliever, stomach medicine, first aid ointment, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, stain removal pen and a sewing kit.