Summer is just around the corner and we are so excited for adventures and travel! While travel can lead to some of the most special and treasured moments with a family, it can also be stressful. Long travel days, endless lines, and unfamiliar environments can make even the best of us a little cranky, not to mention young children. Not to fear, our top travel tips are here! 

 

Plan ahead: One of the best ways to gear up for travel is to plan ahead! If possible, schedule flights or travel during optimal times for both the children and caretakers. This can look different for varying ages and stages! Review travel plans and timelines and be sure to add extra time for unforeseen challenges! 

 

Pack essentials and a bag of tricks: Another great way to plan ahead is to pack the essentials and then pack a bag of back-ups!! Things get misplaced, dropped, or dirty while traveling. Packing extras of essentials will cut down on the momentary moments of crisis! In addition to the essentials, pack a bag of new activities, toys, and snacks for the children. These novel items are more likely to hold their interest! Some of our personal favorites are: Fat Brain Toys, Water Only Paint Books, Sensory Books, and Reusable Sticker Pads!

 

Stay present: Oftentimes we as caregivers set the stage for the children in our care with our energy. If we are able to stay calm and present, we are laying the foundation for them to do the same! Some tips for staying present are ensuring your basic needs are being met; eat full meals, pack snacks, stay hydrated, and use the restroom when you need to. Take 3 deep breaths when you need to and invite the children to do the same. 

 

Explore new adventures: Summer is the perfect time to explore new places! Less scheduled time and routine can be tough, but it is also an amazing opportunity! Lean into the quality time with your loved ones by taking that big trip, going to that new attraction, or seeing those family members that live far away! Time is a gift!

 

Allow for down time: While adventures and traveling can be memorable, it can also be taxing on our energy stores. It can be tempting to see all the sites and not miss a moment, but scheduling in regular down time each day will allow you to fully enjoy the moments during travel versus checking a “we did it” box.” Also, don’t be afraid to adapt plans if someone in the family is needing a break!

 

Go with the flow: This might be the best way to create an amazing experience for all. Expect the unexpected and go with the flow! Oftentimes the best memories are made in expected moments! If we are open and able to go with the flow, we will see challenges as opportunities for connection! Happy Travels!