Though the first trip a family embarks on will generate lots of excitement in your home, you might find yourself getting more anxious as the trip approaches. There are so many logistics involved as you aim to make sure that every family member will be well catered for during the journey. Cut back on that anxiety with the tips below that will help make your first family adventure a success.
Here’s how to travel with family for the first time:
Choose a Family Friendly Destination
Do a little research to check that your target destination has something for everyone. Do not focus only on activities for the kids but ensure that adults in the family will also get to have some fun. Involve the kids in the planning process and let them pick a few activities. You will want to keep the adult activities short as kids will quickly become bored and start to make a fuss.
Prepare Kids for Air Travel
Travelling on a plane involves pressure changes. This causes ears to pop, which can be uncomfortable and painful for children travelling for the first time. Let them know what to expect and give them some chewing gum to ease the discomfort.
Check Travel documents before you leave
Ensure all passports are valid especially those of your children. Check if you need immunisation before you travel to foreign countries. Some countries require proof of immunisation at their airports. Print out air tickets if you bought them online. Put all the documents in a secure place where you can quickly grab them when travel day comes.
Book a Direct Flight
For first time travel, look for nonstop flights to save you the hustle of connecting flights and having to stand in long queues at multiple unfamiliar airports. This will make it easy for kids as they only have to settle in on one flight and they can sleep more.
You want to avoid lugging around heavy bags to new destinations. Make a list of absolutely necessary things before you start packing. Don’t carry too many clothes for your children; instead, find laundry services at your destination. Check the luggage limitations of the airline of your choice to ensure all your bags meet the weight requirements. For carry-on luggage, backpacks might be more suitable for kids, and once at your destination, you can take them with you whenever you go out exploring. If you don’t have enough bags, buy some before your trip. Check online websites like Luggage Direct that offer fast delivery so your new bags arrive before your trip.
Carry a Medical Kit for Emergencies
When venturing to foreign lands for the first time, you never know when you might need some medical attention. Having a small first-aid kit will come in handy. You might not use it but is better to have one especially when travelling with kids.
Beat the Boredom of Long Flights
Long journeys will get boring pretty quickly. Bring some form of entertainment for each family member. Carry books for the adults and an assortment of toys for the young ones. Bring your phones and tablets and install family friendly apps on all of them.
Maintain Your Cool When Travel Plans Fail
There might be flight cancellations, lost luggage and misunderstandings due to language barriers. These are only a few of the things that could go wrong. Stay calm even when things are not going to plan. In addition, remember that like many family gatherings, family trips can quickly descend into chaos due to one snide comment or a misbehaving child. Be gentle when dealing with your family members during your trip.
Don’t depend on Airplane Food
Food available on flights is not usually enjoyable even for the most seasoned traveller. So it will likely not appeal to your younger family members. To be safe, bring something for everyone to munch on. Healthy and dry snacks will come in handy if you have picky eaters. Remember to carry hand sanitisers for use before and after eating the snacks.
Explore in Smaller Family Units
While you should undertake most of the travel activities as a family, it is easy to be overcome by entertaining the kids on a first trip away from home. The adults can take turns watching the kids so that each one of them can get some time for exploring on their own, or you can pair up adults and children with common interests.
Choose the right accommodation
While most people think of hotels when on a trip, they may not be ideal for families, especially large ones. Better options include furnished apartments, villas, or Airbnb places that specifically state that they cater for children. Whatever accommodation you pick, make sure it is child-friendly. Always confirm the booking a day before you leave. With kids in tow, you want to avoid a hassle once you arrive at your destination.
Planning a first trip with family can be a challenge, as is usually the case when we try something new, but the tips above will help ease the process. Make your first holiday not only a time to relax but also a time to learn. We hope these travel tips make your next journey with family a breeze.