Children of all ages can find travel a rewarding and eye-opening experience. There are new experiences, foods, and sights to enjoy, as well as quality family time. Traveling with children can be overwhelming. Unpredictable schedules, long packing lists, and cranky children are just some of the obstacles you might encounter. We’ll show you how to make traveling with children easy. Your children and you should have fun and make memories that will last a lifetime. Isn’t this the purpose of traveling?
Keeping Kids Engaged, at Any Age
You are looking forward to your family vacation but want to ensure that younger members of the family have fun.
It all depends on their age. A baby needs different things than a toddler or teenager. However, no matter how old your child may be, it is important to research before you go on your trip for kid-friendly activities that your family and friends can enjoy. It’s worth it to be prepared.
Rainer Jenss is the founder and president of the Family Travel Association. This trade group focuses on family travel. He said that children this age are easily transportable. You can take them with you wherever they go, as long as the environment is comfortable for them.
Amanda Norcross is the features editor at Family Vacation Critic’s online magazine. She agrees that infants need to have a schedule. She said that if your infant has a specific eating or sleeping schedule, it is important to plan your vacation around this.
Bring along your infant’s favorite toys, books, and bottles on your adventures. Don’t keep your baby in a stroller or baby carrier all day. Give your baby the chance to move around and walk.
Ms. Norcross stated that toddlers are at an exciting age as they will start to notice the world around them. She said that “Destinations become fun for them to explore.” When planning your itinerary, make sure you allow your children to relax and use the hotel’s swimming pool.
Jenss also enjoys spending time with toddlers in local parks. He said that a toddler who has plenty of space to run and play will be happier. You’ll be able to meet parents from nearby towns who can help you find kid-friendly restaurants and other activities.
Mr. Jenss stated that the key to keeping children 5 and over engaged on family trips is to involve them in planning. He said that empowering children this age to choose what interests them, whether it is surfing or visiting cool sites, will make them more engaged.
Tip: Instead of giving your children no direction, let them choose from a variety of activities. For example, a half-day snorkeling excursion or a fishing trip might be options at a beach location. If you live in an urban area, offer your guests a variety of walking tours and let them choose the ones that appeal to you the most.
Eric Stoen, the founder of Travel Babbo online family travel website, stated that selecting the right guides can make your children more excited about their destinations. He recommends that you read reviews online to find out which guides are popular with children. Great guides can have a profound impact on your children. Mr. Stoen’s son is an example of this. He was inspired by a London artist who took them on an art tour through the city. He said, “It was a tour which changed his life.”
Ms. Norcross stated that teens should be involved in the planning of a portion of their trip. She recommends that they choose attractions they are most interested in and let them plan one of the two days of your trip.
A father of two teens, Mr. Jenss suggested that parents might allow older teens to explore the area on their own. Maybe they want to visit a specific neighborhood or shop in a particular store. He said that as long as you and your teenager feel safe, they will be excited to have some alone time.