Family holidays are always eagerly anticipated, but whether you are travelling with your new infant, wriggly crawler or high energy toddler some pre-planning can help ensure everyone enjoys their time away.
Travelling with your baby
You can feel nervous (and hopefully excited) about taking your new baby on holiday for the first time, but with a little bit of thought it should prove to be a wonderful experience for you all.
The first thing to consider is that travelling with an infant can take longer than with just adults – you have to factor in the time taken for feeding and nappy changes. Many parents choose to do as much of the travelling during the night so that baby is asleep for a lot of the journey. Acknowledging the longer travel time from the outset of the journey can make life a lot less stressful.
When booking accommodation, its always wise to enquire about what baby equipment there is available for you to use as this will help reduce down the number of items you need to squeeze into your car or suitcase!
If you are travelling abroad with your baby you will need to think about your baby’s passport, travel insurance, EHIC card, vaccinations and airline rules regarding baby’s car seat and bottles.
When travelling to a hot country always be mindful that your baby can dehydrate more easily than you. It’s a really good idea to know the signs of dehydration:
Dry mouth and thirst
Reduction in wet nappies or dark urine
Few or no tears when crying
Cold and blotchy hands and feet
A top tip for a happy and more relaxed family holiday is to invite eager grandparents along with you to help look after your darling baby.
Travelling with older babies and toddlers
Keeping your older babies and toddlers entertained, watered and fed is the name of the game when travelling long distances to your family holiday.
For older babies and toddlers bring along their favourite nursery rhyme cd or playlist or even an audio book. Think about playing simple travelling games such as ‘picture eye spy’. You might also want to take some new toys and bring them out at intervals throughout the journey to keep your little one amused.
As with infants plan lots of stops to allow your toddler chance to feed, drink and stretch their legs along the journey.
Holidays are a fantastic opportunity for spending some real quality time together as a family. Often traditions are started which must be repeated every holiday – favourite card game, badminton tournaments… Little children can learn new skills when on holiday. With lots of parental attention it can be the time that your little one learns to ride a bike or learns to swim.