Traveling is a great way to help your children experience more of the world around them and to learn about different people and their cultures. While the memories your kids make while traveling around with you will likely last a lifetime for them, the hardships that come from traveling with kids will likely stick with you for a while as well.
So to make traveling with your kids a more pleasant experience, whether youâ€™re sticking close to home or going international, here are three tips that may help you and your kids have an easier time.
Traveling By Plane
If your children donâ€™t do well in the car for extended periods of time, traveling by plane may be the best option for your family. However, there are also certain things about air travel that makes taking kids difficult as well.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends focusing your travel preparations with kids on what airport security will be like, which can oftentimes be scary for young children. Have them wear layers that are easy to remove for security screenings, make sure they understand that theyâ€™ll get all their belongings back once theyâ€™ve made it through the x-ray machine, and explain what is appropriate and not appropriate to say at an airport.
By preparing your kids for these more rigid safety standards well ahead of time, hopefully your time at the airport will go smoothly.
Getting out of your own country with your children can be a great experience to teach them about how other people around the world live, but Elisa Bernick, a contributor to TransitionsAbroad.com, reminds us that there are also certain safety precautions you should be taking. Bernick suggests explaining to your kids how some other countries perceive tourists and why you should attempt to fit in as much as possible.
You want your kids to understand how to be safe while traveling in a different country without scaring them, so try a few role playing exercises to best illustrate your points.
Prepare For Unintentional Separation
Regardless of whether youâ€™re traveling or not, itâ€™s not uncommon for children to get separated from your family even after your best intentions to keep them right next to you. When this happens in an unfamiliar place, the fear for both the child and parent can be shocking.
To best prepare for this unfortunate circumstance, Heather Swain, a contributor to Parents.com, suggests teaching your child to stay put until you find them, to know your real name and ask another mom for help if they need it, and to dress them in bright colors and attach your contact information to them or their clothing in an attempt to make your reunion happen quicker.
Donâ€™t let the potential for challenges keep you from experiencing the world with your children. Use the tips mentioned above to feel more confident about your childâ€™s safety while traveling to make your adventures the best they can be.