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Top Tips for traveling with children

Traveling in general can be a stressful task; remembering your passport, packing the right clothes and putting all your big liquids in the checked in bags are just a few of the minor things we need to do; now imagine that with kids/babies too. As a nervous flyer I can't imagine anything worse than getting on an aeroplane, but I bet some parents feel this way when they first travel with their baby/children. Below we have compiled the top tips from other mothers and parents to help you "soon-to-be traveling families" survive the journey.

1. Entertainment

Flying itself is a restrictive situation to be in; everyone's in limited space and surrounded by strangers, with not much to do (except sometimes watch movies/shows). Unfortunately for some parents their kids aren't at the stage where sitting down and watching for hours on end works. That's why it's so important to bring your own means of entertainment for your child. Don't go overboard and buy half of Mothercare, but some simple choices like the Ipad filed with their favourite songs/videos, story books, toys, blocks, colouring books; things that are time consuming and easy to use/do. It's not wise to bring an 1000 piece lego building or puzzle, because if one piece goes missing who knows what meltdown could be produced (plus, stepping on a Lego piece; hell. no.).

2. Snacks

Most airlines provide small snacks, meals or food you can buy onboard, but sometimes those foods won't be suitable for your baby or maybe they just don't like them. That's why it's always a great idea to bring a variety of snacks that you know your baby enjoys for the journey. Maybe even something special that they can have as a treat if they are good? Otherwise, it might not be a great idea to bring loads of sugar on the flight as a hyper baby can sometimes result in an overtired baby. Keep it simple, clean and easy for you and your child.

3. Accept the possibilities

Sometimes aeroplanes and babies/children just don't get along at first; it can be scary and uncomfortable for some young travelers; so I think just preparing yourself for the possibility of tears and meltdowns may be better than denying it. Not only that, but aeroplane ear is a thing and the gradual change in altitude can cause severe pain for some; it's best to be prepared for this possibility too (chew on something/give milk/drinks). Obviously I'm not saying get onboard with a negative attitude, but instead accept the fact that this may be difficult, but it has an ending; whether it's 2 hours away or 20 hours away. It will end.

4. A new stimulant

There's nothing like a new toy/book to get your child excited and entertained (even if it is only momentarily). I've seen that many new mothers have gone and bought a new easy to enjoy toy for their kids before they fly (and gave it to them on the plane) so that they are interested in their new possession and feel satisfied. It doesn't have to be extravagant, but sometimes introducing something new into your child's environment can enhance their mood and keep them amused; which is exactly what you need when flying.

Hopefully some of these suggestions will ease your next adventure with the family. Remember everyone has their own routines and way of doing motherhood/parenthood. With time and trail and error, everything will fall into place; including the trips and travels. Goodluck and stay safe!

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*Disclaimer: these blogs are based on opinion and personal research and thoughts.*

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