Aaah, the perfect getaway after the longest winter ever in New Jersey: Aruba! We just got back from six beautiful and relaxing days on the beach. The flights though-not so relaxing.

We have three boys under the age of six. Our oldest, has quite a passport. He was born in Japan while we were expats to the country. As soon as we could travel with him, we did! By the time our son was 3 years old, he had been to over 10 countries and every time we traveled, we didn’t regret it one bit (no matter how hard the flight or jet lag)!

Traveling is worth it, isn’t it? It is a way to get out of the routine and a great cultural experience for the family.  But no matter how much you have traveled, when flying with children, they will throw you a curve ball and you take a crash course on traveling with children once again. Also, the more kids you have, the more things you have to remember. So here are a few tips from our lessons learned last week:

1) Attach the pacifier to your baby. How did I forget this?? It was absolutely embarrassing and GROSS to continuously pick up the paci off the dirty airplane floor.

2) Pack an extra outfit for everyone in your carry on (including you).  The most experienced traveler of the kids threw up twice on the way back. My husband was fast and avoided a major disaster. Luckily, a friend reminded me to throw in a t-shirt in one of the carry-ons for my husband as well.

3) Scan the plane for extra seats. We are…thrifty. Ha! We didn’t buy a seat for the baby who is 10 months-old. On the way to Aruba I realized towards the end of the flight that I should have asked the woman right in front of me (with the empty seat next to her) to switch with me. On the way back, the last rows were pretty empty and a woman was happy to move forward.

 4) Travel light. If you can, try to pack as little as possible. I used to travel with many pairs of shoes. Not anymore. Diapers and swimmers take over the space now. We have our hands full with the stroller, carry-ons and the children! I’ll pack just the flip flops, thank you. Kids are flexible. No reason to travel with everything you think you’ll need. We didn’t bring toys and as soon as we arrived to the pool, a family ending their vacation gave us all of their sand toys. We too passed them on at the end of our vacation.

5) Carry-on the electronics. Leave the shoes but pack the Kindles, Nooks, iPads, iPhones…as much as you have. Something will run out of batterry, someone will want the app in THAT one, the TVs on the plane are not working…something will happen. Thank goodness for technology.

Most importantly, don’t stress. There is nothing you can do when you are way up in the sky and your child is having issues. Children feel our energy and if we stay upbeat and positive, they might too! Remember that when you land, there will be a great adventure to experience or a nice bottle of wine waiting to be opened at home.

Happy travels!

 

Related posts:

  1. Road Trips with Kids

3 responses to Travel Tips and Reminders

  1. Hi Betty, these are awesome tips. I can’t emphasize enough about the extra clothes for kids and for mom/dad in the carry on luggage. My older one threw up while the younger one was just fine coming back from a trip recently.

  2. Great tips. We have been traveling with our daughter since she was 6 months old and 15 countries later, she is now 10! One thing she loved was when I would go to the dollar store and buy lots of cheap things for her to play with. I would then wrap them up in colorful paper and take them out throughout the plane ride. She would love the surprise and was busy for a long time!

  3. Thank you ladies!
    NIdhi, I won’t ever forget now!!!

    Monica, what a great idea!! I’ll will for sure do the surprises next time! Thanks again!

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