What can parents do to best prepare the kids for their upcoming trip? We all know that proper preparation for any activity is important; the same goes for family travel. Sufficiently preparing for family travel is the key to enjoying your time away from home.
Breaking the (Travel) News
Every family – and vacation – is different. You may or may not want to discuss with your kids the possibility of traveling up to six months in advance. Honestly, there have been many trips where my husband and I don’t announce to our kids we’re heading out until that day. In fact, we did a “Surprise, We’re Going to Disney” video three separate times – watch it below.
For other trips, such as when we went to New York City, our first grader was involved in the planning so we told her soon after we bought the tickets. You need to gauge your own children and do what you need to do to avoid the constant, “Are we leaving today?” that might happen daily if you tell them way too soon!
Hit the Library Before Your Family Vacation
If your family is traveling somewhere new, make sure to show them pictures of what the destination looks like – the food, the people, the entertainment, and what to expect. A parent planning a family vacation with young kids should choose a destination that has plenty for those young kids to do. Before our trip to New York, I brought the girls to the public library. The 7-year-old found loads of books on New York and spent the next week or so learning everything she could about the city. She helped plan the itinerary with her books and a map!
Home Away From Home
Regardless the age – that means parents’ too – traveling away from home can bring on homesickness. We may long to sleep in our own beds, shower in our own shower and chill on our own couch. Kids are just like us, expect they whine a little louder! Help ease the homesick feeling by bringing pieces of home with you. A favorite blankie, pillow or even bath toy may make their days easier when they are away from home.