Tis’ the season for family trips! We travel A LOT with our toddler and it is rarely an easy feat. Over the last 22 months we have been through trials and tribulations, planes, trains, taxi’s and cars and have finally come up with a way to travel with ease. I’m sure many of you would agree that NOT traveling with your toddler is the best way to travel, but with out-of-town family and the holidays, that is often not an option. So, for those of you who are planning a flight or a road trip with your little one sometime in the future make sure you double check our 8 Tips for Traveling With a Toddler.
1.Snacks, snacks and a good snack catcher!
I prefer taking a non-leaky sippy cup of water and snacks that she doesn’t normally get at home. I always put them in a “snack catcher” because they not only keep her from spilling tiny snacks everywhere, but it takes her a lot more time to finish the snack.
Our little girl will “read” her favorite books over and over and over again. Then, when she’s sick of reading herself, I can takeover and read them to her (as long as motion sickness hasn’t kicked in!).
3. Bring something to color
Coloring is not only great for developing fine motor skills, but it’s also a great distraction during a long trip. I recently discovered the Magic Pen Painting books and they are perfect for traveling! The marker is clear until it is used on the coloring book. Kids are not able to color on themselves, their clothes, their seats or anything else! Score!
All kids love stickers, right? Whip those bad boys out and let them stick away. In their hair? On their clothes? All over one coloring sheet? Why not?! As long as they’re happy and not causing any damage, I say it’s a win.
When our little girl travels in her carseat and falls asleep, her poor little head is always slouched to one side. She looks so uncomfortable and ends up waking up grumpy. I decided to try a kid’s size neck pillow, and it works wonderfully… that is, of course, if she takes a nap.
6. Distract with interactive toys
As annoying as these light up noise makers can be, they are miracle workers when it comes to entertaining a small child. Make sure to pack a new toy (or one they haven’t seen in a long while). If you are on a flight, you may want to opt for a quiet toy or even one that just lights up.
We can do a million rounds of “itsy bitsy spider” and “wheels on the bus”, but after that it’s time to move on to something we can both enjoy… which is usually Taylor Swift. This one is a littler harder to accomplish on a flight, but child-friendly headphones make it possible for you to “shake it off” no matter where your location.
9. Put your guilt aside and utilize the tablet.
I wish that I never had to rely on Mickey Mouse to calm my child, but the reality is that desperate times call for desperate measures. After 8 hours in a car or 4 hours in an airport, we are all feeling grumpy, but Mickey Mouse is always there to save the day. “Oh Toodles!”
When all else fails, call for back-up.
Tell us: How do you survive traveling with kids? Any tips or tricks we missed?