The thought of travelling with children can turn even the most calm parents into jibbering wrecks. The thought of being stuck on a plane or train with someone else's children when they haven't planned properly in order to keep them quiet is enough to make anyone shudder. So here are the top 20 tips for travelling with children. They're not foolproof but if one of them helps you then my work here is done!
  1. Don't rule out taking children on a long-haul flight. Only you know your children and whether they will cope.

  2. Don't forget your child's favourite book or cuddly toy that they use to get to sleep at home. If they don't sleep without it in the familiar surroundings of their own bedroom, they won't sleep without it whilst travelling.

  3. A pack of playing cards can provide hours of entertainment during airport delays, particularly if you don't usually play cards at home. It won't take up much space in your hand luggage and may be worth its weight in gold.

  4. If delayed at an airport with plenty of shops, give your children a (very small) budget and allow them to look around the shops to see what they can buy with their money. Not only will they spend ages window shopping and adding up what they can afford, they will usually choose something that will keep them entertained for a short while once they have bought it.

  5. If travelling on a ferry with children for the first time, allow them to travel on the deck in the fresh air, at least at the start of the journey. They will be fascinated by the boat and the water and are less likely to feel seasick if they are outside and able to see the boat's movements whilst they get used to the feeling of motion.

  6. Children have a hand-luggage allowance as well. If you are smart with your packing, you can all travel with hand-luggage only. This can shave hours off your journey time and eliminate the possibility of lost luggage. Both of these can make travelling with children much less stressful.

  7. If travelling on a long haul flight with children, gift wrap some favourite toys and a few new toys. Unwrapping anything is exciting and they will be delighted to see their favourite toy and even more delighted by a carefully selected new toy.

  8. If one parent is a nervous flier, sit children on their first flight next to the less nervous parent to avoid the child picking up on the nerves. This will be beneficial for everyone on the child's first flight and will benefit that child in later life because it's no fun being a nervous flier.

  9. If travelling on very short flight, check whether the total time spent including airport check-in, baggage collection and the flight itself is quicker than you would make that journey by train. Children are often easier to cope with on a train as they can move about throughout the journey. It is always worth putting in a bit of time to research other options before booking your travel.

  10. Lastly, make sure you have a few days off work after returning from your family holiday. This can be your time to get the house back in order recover if it was a bit stressful! You will go back to work much more refreshed and ready to face the world!


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