When asking if any parents have any tips on travelling, the most frequent response I got was “don’t bring them” (cue laughter). That’s all well and good, but when they grow up you might have a bit of explaining to do as to why you’ve travelled the world but they were stuck with their nanny at home. Travelling both long-haul and short-haul with children can be a pain, but don’t let that stop you from booking your flight and bringing your kids, so we’ve got some top tips to keep your children happy and keep you sane!
Remember to bring snacks when travelling with children, we all know that if they’re hungry they’re not afraid to let you know. Try and pack fruits so they have some healthy food before they land, however if they’ll only stick to Haribo’s then we can’t deny that. They’re also good for getting them to eat while you take off and land so their ears don’t pop and hurt as much.
Probably one of the most important tips for air travel with children is to keep them entertained. If they are occupied by something else, chances are they won’t get bored and kick up a fuss. Be sure to bring entertainment and I’m not talking a crossword in the paper. A good bit of entertainment is an iPad or any other tablet, download all of their favourite films and games so they can easily play – just make sure you charge the night before so it’s’ fully charged when you get there otherwise your hard work will be down the drain. Other travel entertainments for kids are their favourite toys or maybe give them a new gift every hour so they can play with something new.
This also comes under entertainment but I can’t stress enough how much difference a colouring book can be. Just pick up a £2 book from a shop with some crayons (not pencils, they might see them as a dangerous utensil), and if they fall asleep there’s nothing stopping you from colouring in too; although if you hit turbulence, you’ll have to be extra careful to stay in the lines.
I find it difficult to sleep on a night flight, and I can imagine your kids will too however be sure to give them a reward if they do fall asleep or keep quiet for the whole flight. Air travel with children at night can be dreaded because other passengers will most likely want to sleep not listen to your child crying because they’re bored. Encouragement, praise and rewards go a long way with children, even if it is a sweet.
It’s also worth noting that children will often mimic you and what you do, so if you start playing with their toys they will want to join in. However if they’re not having it, another tip for international travel with kids is to take a quick break to the bathroom and play a game with them, being away from everyone might calm them down… just be careful of flushing the toilet because the noise makes everyone jump, no matter what age.
These are just a few tips for travelling with small children, if you’re travelling long-haul with babies, check out our blog post where we gave some top tips to make sure the flight is 10x less stressful. No need to fear that flight any longer, so where’s your next adventure with the little one?