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Ultimate Guide to Traveling with Kids

Make memories that last a lifetime!

Traveling with kids can be an incredibly rewarding experience, although it may not be easy, it can be filled with laughter, adventure, and unforgettable memories. We like to say, nothing worthwhile is easy. While it may seem overwhelming at first, with proper planning and a positive mindset, you can create an enjoyable trip for the whole family. In this blog post, we're sharing helpful tips and creative ideas to make your family travel experience smooth and memorable!

We take our kids everywhere we go: hikes, skiing, fishing, boating, tubing, camping, beach, you name it, we will try it!

The Ultimate Guide to Traveling with Kids

1. Choose Family-Friendly Destinations:

When planning your trip, consider destinations that offer a range of activities suitable for children of different ages or something your kids love! Our boys love the outdoors, so that's mainly what we do. Look for places that have kid-friendly attractions such as theme parks, zoos, museums or beaches where they can play and explore. Almost any place you go, you can find kid-friendly activities.

2. Involve Your Kids in the Planning Process:

Get your kids excited about the trip by involving them in the planning process. Let them help choose activities or research interesting facts about the destination. This not only builds anticipation but also empowers them to take ownership of their travel experience. We love to watch a few YouTube videos to help us determine what we want to do when we get to our destination. One year Hudson was really into bison, so we went to Custer State Park in South Dakota for a bison round-up. The boys love fishing, so we try to incorporate fishing on many trips. Do something your kids can look forward to. We like to watch YouTube videos and show them where we are going. I recommend watching the videos first and then sharing it with them.

3. Pack Smartly:

Packing efficiently is crucial when traveling with kids. Make sure to pack essentials like extra clothes (including layers for varying weather), snacks, medications if needed, favorite toys or comfort items, and any necessary documents like passports, birth certificates or identification cards. We always take birth certificates when flying with a "lap" child because they fly free. We want to be able to prove their age.

4. Plan Ahead for Transportation:

Whether you're traveling by car or plane, plan ahead to keep your kids entertained during the journey. Bring along games, books or tablets loaded with their favorite movies/shows/music to keep them engaged during long trips. For us, each boy helps pack their own backpack. One toy, one book, water bottle, change of clothes, and whatever is specific for the trip. Sometimes they bring their "digital" camera, binoculars, sunglasses, and so on.

5. Embrace Flexibility in Itinerary:

While having a general itinerary is important when traveling with kids so you don't miss out on must-see attractions or events; it's equally important to embrace flexibility in order to accommodate their needs and interests along the way. There have been multiple times where we skip something we want to do because it felt like we were

'pushing it.' Sometimes we push it, and sometimes we relax and go with the flow. Both are okay in certain situations. You know your kids best!

6. Research Child-Friendly Accommodations:

When booking accommodations make sure they are child-friendly establishments that offer amenities like cribs, high chairs, play areas, and if you're staying in a hotel, make sure it has a POOL! Additionally, consider staying in vacation rentals like AirBnB or VRBO or family-friendly resorts that provide more space and privacy for your family. Keep in mind how you plan to budget food. If you're staying in a hotel you may need to rely on restaurants for your meals....while an AirBNB or VRBO might better allow you to have some meals "at home." Do you need to take a cooler? Sometimes we will pack picnic lunches in a cooler to save a few dollars.

7. Take Frequent Breaks:

Kids have shorter attention spans and energy levels compared to adults. Plan for frequent breaks during sightseeing or long walks to let them rest, snack, or simply play around. I better say snacks again! :) This will help keep their spirits up and avoid meltdowns.

8. Engage in Educational Activities:

Traveling is a great opportunity for kids to learn about different cultures, history, and nature. Visit museums with interactive exhibits or take guided tours that cater specifically to children's interests. When we went to Texas we paid to go fishing with a guide. That turned out great because he told us of a great place to eat & he told us how to go crab fishing with chicken drum sticks. That was a blast!

9. Capture the Memories:

Take plenty of photos/videos throughout your trip to capture those precious moments with your kids. Encourage them to document their own experiences.. We are starting to record our boys and let them narrate the vacation. It's cute and they seem to remember it more. Plus, they love watching the video once we edit one.

10. Embrace Spontaneity:

While planning is important when traveling with kids, don't be afraid to embrace spontaneity as well! Allow room for unexpected adventures or detours along the way – these often turn out to be the most memorable experiences!

Traveling with kids can be an enriching experience that strengthens family bonds while creating lifelong memories together. So go ahead - embark on this exciting journey with your little ones and create memories that will last a lifetime!

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