I’m sharing my favorite tips for traveling with kids by car or plane. My husband and I have always enjoyed traveling even when we could only afford small weekend trips. It’s always been important to us to create experiences for our children and family and to remember and share those experiences together.
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We started taking regular trips when our children were as small as a few months old. Obviously traveling with kids gets easier the older they get but you have to make adjustments as you get more children also. Here are my tips for traveling with kids.
Travel as light as possible. One piece of luggage per person is our rule, even if you’re a teen girl. We purchased little rolling bags and backpacks so our little ones could even carry their own bags. Did you know that rolling clothing instead of folding saves on space? You would be surprised how much more you can fit in a piece of luggage. Don’t pack unnecessary things, if you have 3 girls you don’t each need to bring a hair dryer. Most hotels have hair dryers so I don’t usually ever bother bringing one.
Have your kids help. I made a packing list so the older kids can pack for themselves and the younger kids can help gather their items to be packed. You can print it off for your own use below.
Use the SkyCap for curbside check-in. It’s only a few dollars per bag and when you’re traveling with 6 kids it is so worth it. Take my word for it, I am speaking from experience. They can take care of car seats and strollers too. It saved us so much time and aggravation.
Everyone has their own backpack for the flight (or drive). Fill the bag with age appropriate things to keep each of them busy. Include a change of clothes in each backpack in case a piece of luggage gets lost. I also put in little snacks and a water bottle for waiting on flights so you don’t have to buy things at the airport. We help our kids pack their bags but teach them that they are responsible for their own things, except airline tickets and passports, of course.
Do as much on line as possible. Little people can be impatient, so can big people for that matter. We do as much prep work on line as possible, everything from early check-in to planning our itinerary and even pre-paying for as many activities as possible. When we made our trip to Hawaii we pre-paid for everything except food and souvenirs.
Choose good luggage. I prefer 4-Wheel Spinners which means you can easily guide and steer your way through busy airports. They’re also easier for kids to control. Choose ones that are lightweight and have plenty of room and a couple storage pockets. Have the kids try them out at the store to make sure they can handle their own luggage.
Have medications available. I have a few kids that I didn’t know had motion sickness and ear aches. Be prepared for that, it will make your trip much more pleasant. Also keep any daily medication with you in case your luggage is misplaced or delayed. Even if you’re traveling by car it’s much more convenient to have daily medication within arms reach.
Be flexible. Whether you’re traveling by car or plane things probably aren’t going to be perfect, in fact I can pretty much guarantee they won’t be. It’s okay, you are creating some awesome memories with your family.
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