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I don’t think that traveling with kids will ever be labeled as easy. Ok, when Mini was little, traveling with her was super easy. She was easy. When she was a baby, I would wear her on the flights. She would nurse and sleep through the flight only to wake up and be pleasant. When she started to walk, she would pull her own car seat to the gate. She’s a pro.
But now I have THREE children so traveling isn’t that easy breezy. But there are some tips that I’ve picked up along the way to streamline this as much as possible.
5 Pro-Tips To Traveling With Kids
1. Pack snacks. Lots of snacks.
This is super important whether you’re traveling by plane, train or automobile. When flying, this can be tricky because of all the regulations so make sure you check those first but cars? I love the idea of filling the craft box with snacks. Some people hate the idea but it works for us since we have some serious snackers.
When your kids are president and vice president of team eat and you’re about to hit the road you’ve got to properly prepare… Snack packs for each because I’m not here for the fighting and shenanigans. So excited to be road tripping in the 2016 @mitsucars Outlander Sport!!! #tcmtravels #TeamEat #travelingwithkids #snackpacks #healthysnacks #snacks #roadtrip #craftymom #drivemitsubishi
2. Make sure all electronics are charged.
Sure, we don’t want our kids to have crazy amounts of screen time but listen, if you have a choice between your kids terrorizing other travelers what are you choosing? My choice is Peppa Pig. But make sure that those electronics are fully charged AND you have headphones made for children. I love the Amazon Kindle and these here headphones since they’re cute and the girls look so cute wearing them.
3. Make sure you have age appropriate entertainment packed.
As much as we wish the kids would sit and watch whatever entertainment is available for them on their tablets, they won’t because, well, kids. Inside of their travel bags make sure to have back up games and forms of entertainment.
This age range is pretty easy. They typically want to be held or snuggled or nursed. But they do like to be entertained and like to chew things—especially when teething. We love this rattle and it keeps BC entertained.
Toddlers & Preschoolers
These guys are the hardest to entertain. I mean, at my age it’s super hard to sit still for all the time it takes traveling so for them I know it’s really difficult–and they make sure we know. But since we homeschool it’s also a pretty good time to get some quality learning in. I love the Highlight’s Activity Book for ABC. It’s colorful and makes it easy for me to make sure she’s getting some learning done. These also come in different age ranges so it’s available for others.
If you have a preschooler plus an older one <insert my current set up> having the older one play games with them is a great way to distract them. I love this sneaky game that also teaches kids to look out for patterns while they play.
Ages 5 and up
If I’m being completely honest, I think they should already have their bags packed with the things they need to entertain themselves–right? But I do like introducing new and fun educational games to my kids while we’re on the go. One of the newest ones that Mini has are these Mental Blox. It works their critical thinking skills which is really one of those life long skills they need to make sure are properly honed.
If you’re kids have tablets that are compatible with either Google Play or the Apple App Store, they’ll love this interactive coloring book. This is NOT your basic coloring book!! My kids creations come to life and they love it.
4. Set proper expectations for travel.
Yes, this means be proactive with the “Are we there yet?” questions. Let them know how long the trip will take, how you’re getting there, and give frequent updates. When I roadtripped with all the kids to go speak at Blog Life University 4 weeks after giving birth, I shared with Mini how nervous I was about the drive with the 3 of them by myself. Do you know that was the easiest road trip ever? Share with your kids any emotions surrounding travel as well so they can help if they’re old enough to.
5. Pack treats for yourself.
I know this is about making travel easier with kids but let’s be real here, if the parentals aren’t 100% ready to tackle the trip, all hell will break loose. Travel is stressful so make sure you take the edge off by packing snacks that are just for you and making sure you have your activities as well. I just finished downloading my audio books to my phone so I don’t have to worry about whether I can stream or not. I also have a wireless earbud so that I can listen freely while still keeping an ear out for my minions.