Creating A Kid-Friendly Travel Plan

Tried-and-True Tips To Lower Your Stress Level

travelling with children

You remember the good old day when travelling was fun and exciting, right? Well, those days are long gone. Now with airport screening, travelling has become quite a pain. Add travelling with kids to that and your stress level doubles! In addition to the security checks, you are praying your child won’t be the one screaming the entire flight. Trust me, I know that feeling first-hand. Sometimes you wonder iwhy you bothered to take the trip. I have found, however, that with a little planning, OK, a lot of planning, air travel can be manageable...most times anyway.

I have two sons and we love to travel. We have family all over the place and enjoy visiting them. I’ll share some of the things we do and hopefully you can find a few gems that you can incorporate to make your next trip more enjoyable:

 Carry On. Our older son is a breeze now. I promise you, it gets better. He is almost eight years old, he is very independent and has travelled several times, so he knows exactly what to do now. He has carried his own carry-on since he was about four or five. I make sure he Includes items such as a charged DVD player and movies, playing cards like Go-Fish and Old Maid, little games with pieces put into Ziploc bags, colouring books and crayons, snacks and a change of clothes. Now that he is older he is responsible for packing to ensure it has exactly what he wants.

 Gate-check the gear. Use the stroller as long as possible, and take it all the way to the gate and then just break it down at the plane doors. I have never carried the car seat on board, I have always checked that in at the counter. I understand though that if you can take it on board, the infant is the safest in the car seat. If the seat beside you is empty, perfect! Keep the baby in the car seat right beside you. In the baby bag have rattles, blankets, snacks, food—tons of it especially if you are not nursing, just in case there is a flight delay, diapers, wipes, juice, change of clothes (I usually have 2 sets). Put your personal items in one section—travel documents, wallet etc.

 Time the nap. I am a firm believer in having a sleep schedule. So, I suggest trying to time your child's nap so that while you are in the air it will be sleep time. It may not always work but it’s definitely worth a try.

 Nurse/feed during take-off and landing. This is a BIGGIE! You have to get their jaws moving to prevent the pressure in their ears from building up. Pressure build-up can be extremely painful and that can lead to a poor screaming baby! Word of advice, wait until the plane is actually running down the tarmac. If you start too early, they can be taxiing for a long time and your baby could finish the feeding before the plane takes off. Not good. Been there, done that!

What suggestions do you have for travelling with infants? I am going to need them for future trips. Share them here please.

Make the most of your vacation to a sunny destination by planning ahead. Don’t miss these other articles that will help you and your family have the holiday you deserve.

Renée is Mummy to sons Jordan and Braelan.  She recently launched a new website, Kid 'N' Play JA.  Kid 'N' Play JA is the go-to location for parents living in or travelling to Jamaica.  Find information on activities and events, attractions, parenting and children’s articles, kid-friendly hotels and much more.  Enjoy your kids and Jamaica with  Connect with Renée at [email protected], or Twitter @kidnplayja.