Traveling with Children

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Family vacations can be a blast – whether it’s taking a road trip cross country to visit Grandma or an exciting excursion to Disney Land, trips with the family are always memorable. However, traveling with kids can also be difficult: Someone could get sick, kids can be fussy, and travel routes can take unexpected turns. What is the trick to a successful family vacation where everyone has a good time?First of all, it is important when going on a family vacation to remember Newton’s Law: Anything that can go wrong will go wrong. This sounds terrifying, but what it ultimately boils down to is that you must prepare for the worst possible outcomes. For example, if you are road tripping with your little ones over a few states, it is a good idea to plan for all things that could go wrong on the road: Flat tires, carsick kids, construction on your normal route, that kind of stuff. The point of Newton’s Law is not to scare you into never taking another trip again, but to be prepared in the event of something going wrong or an emergency.

It is also a good idea to pack each family member traveling his or her own travel bag on top of his or her regular luggage. Does one child have a favorite book? Stick it in their travel bag. Is another child more prone to carsickness than the others? Pack them some ginger ale or tummy medicine in their own travel bag. Does your partner have a favorite traveling CD? Travel bag. This way, everyone has their own luggage, but also a bag for themselves that they can easily reach while in the car or on a plane without having to dig through the packed luggage.

With that being said, try your best not to over pack. While it may seem like a good idea to pack everything but the kitchen sink for your family’s trip, over packing could result in losing items, having a hard time finding what you need, and just plain being annoyed with all the luggage you have to carry. Find the right balance of being prepared and packing just the right amount for your family.

Just like how it is a good idea to plan and prepare for traveling, it is also smart to research your destination as much as you can. If you’re headed to a family member’s house, you may not need to do as much research as for traveling to a theme park you’ve never been to. What kinds of food will they have there? Do they have on site lodging? Will I need to find my own transportation? These kinds of things are good to know well before starting your trip.

And lastly, the most important thing to do when going on a family vacation or trip is to just do it. It is so easy to have the idea of taking a family trip and then fall through on your plans. In the end, after all the planning and packing and chaos that can seem to occur on a trip, your family will enjoy the time spent together and you will make memories that will last a lifetime.

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