As a young child, holidays are hotly anticipated dates in their mental diaries. Counting down the days until late-night cartoon and movie marathons, bingeing on popcorn and favourite sweet treats is a straightforward visage for this half term. However, if there are flights booked and travel arrangements in place, half term may sound more rocky than rocking a new-born baby into a structured pattern of sleep. From choosing only the relevant essentials to pack for yourself and your children to the propriety of flight times, below we have prepared a number of essential tips to smoothen the anguish of anxiety to base level this half-term.
1. Take it slow
Travelling individually or with a partner is a relaxing and adventurous mix but with children, particularly young toddlers, take each day in slow strides. Mellow the pace and squeeze extra time for possible holdups such as nappy changes, feeding, mid-afternoon naps or strapping shoes back onto those mischievous little feet. With increased responsibilities to respond to, this will subsequently hamper the progress of each day so be reasonable with the chosen activities and each day’s agenda. For an example, visiting four different museums spaced across all directions of an erratic compass over four separate days rather than squeezing all into one day. The less you have planned, the more smooth and stress-free each day will flow. Let spontaneity bump a jolt into each day and you may find you and your family exploring greater depths of a city and landscape than originally planned.
2. Packing and prepping
Nappies? Check. Spare outfits? Check. Milk bottle? Check. Did you know, packing is a repugnant task for most and if squeezing items into a confined space is not wrinkle-and-grey-hair-inducing enough, packing for a toddler is triple the loaded fun. Having young children in tow leads to extra baggage and if you are planning to travel overseas, make sure you pack more of the essentials which may not be as easily available for purchase abroad. We recommend sending gifts and souvenirs separately to free up space for your children’s essentials and to only bring appropriate clothing to suit local climate. Travelling with children in the equation is energy consuming and by bringing any unnecessary items can flip excitement into anxiety and may as a result, stream into a heavy luggage fee.
Being air-bound with children fully alert and energised can cause parents to become irate dampening the coursing excitement therefore as a recommendation, when looking up flights and their respective flight times, choose their nap time slot to prevent them from being restless and fidgety in their seats. Allow extra time for security checks, luggage drop-off and check in.
Going to the countryside to stay at Grandma and Grandpa’s house? Pack lightly, appropriate necessities and plan ahead to avoid driving into roadblocks or curled in morning rush hour traffic. Depending on the age of your child, install a suitable car seat and extra rear-view mirrors to allow you to keep an eye on children without the extensive efforts of needing to park up on the side to turn around. For long car journeys, ensure entertainment is fitted to contain and occupy the children’s attention allowing you to focus on driving.
3. Be patient and cheery
After the extensive efforts to pack and meticulously arrange everything into its allocated slot, no matter the eye-brimming stress and anxiety that entails, be patient and enjoy the experience. Each time you travel with children, you explore new and undiscovered landscape, pioneering memories exchanged exclusively between yourself and your children. Establish memories, tune the mood of the trip and exude high spirits so children can understand the enjoyment and excitement travelling away from home giving them a new reason to look forward to school holidays.