The Ultimate Guide To Hassle-Free Family Travel

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The Ultimate Guide To Hassle-Free Family Travel

Table of Contents

  • How To Prepare
  • Hacks For Kids Travel
  • Hacks For Older Kids Travel
  • Road Trip Travel

Use These Travel Tips To Make Your Next Family Vacation Unforgettable

There’s nothing like a family getaway. Whether you’re spending a week at a family-friendly resort or sightseeing for a few days, family vacations bring everyone together and help you build memories that your kids will cherish forever.

However, traveling with family is much different than solo travel. Not only do you have to ensure that you’ve packed everything your family needs, but you also have to ensure your children make it through the long haul to your final destination.

To make your family travel experience smooth, you’ll need to do a little preparation. Let’s look at what you can do before and on your travel day to ensure your family is ready to make memories as soon as they arrive.

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How To Prepare For Your Next Family Trip

Travel planning is one of the most exciting parts of a family vacation. And if you play your cards right, it will help make your trip more relaxing and memorable.

Here are some things you can do before you set off to make your next family trip the best one yet.

#1. Choose A Destination That Appeals To The Whole Family

From theme parks to national parks, there are lots of different destinations to choose from. The best trip will have something appealing for all family members. Search for a travel blog that reflects your family dynamic to help guide you toward a great vacation spot. Resorts are great for families because they have many amenities close to your hotel room. This means you can quickly whisk small children away for a nap to prevent a meltdown. If you’re on a budget, look for vacation packages that offer extra perks and access to multiple activities within a single reservation.

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#2. Create A Packing List

Packing can be stressful, especially if you’re packing for more than one person. With so much to consider, it feels inevitable that something will get overlooked, leaving you scrambling on vacation to get what you need. The best way to be prepared with all the essentials is to make a packing list for your family. Think about everything you’ll need to bring and what you can get once you arrive. Determine how many outfits, pairs of underwear, and shoes each family member will need. Inventory what items are essential, like strollers and car seats, and what you can reuse to save space in your luggage, like sweatshirts and pajamas.

Remember, it’s best to pack lighter than cart tons of luggage on your trip. The less baggage you have to worry about, the easier your journey will be.

#3. Pre-Book At Every Opportunity

Solo travel gives you the luxury of being spontaneous, but this doesn’t work when you have kids. When it comes to family travel, planning ahead can be a lifesaver. Pre-book your accommodations to ensure you can arrive and go directly to your room. This will allow your family to put down their bags and decompress after a long travel day. Use a helpful app to make as many travel reservations as possible. Build an itinerary that accommodates your children’s nap times and gives everyone some downtime to avoid overstimulation.

The more you plan, the fewer decisions you’ll need to make in the moment. Don’t forget to use a credit card that offers rewards to ensure you get the most from your family travel.

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#4. Prepare Your Kids For What Traveling Will Be Like

Children of all ages crave adventure, but they find comfort in predictability. Sit down with your family and talk about what they can expect. This will help make your children feel more comfortable, preventing feelings of fear and overwhelm that can lead to meltdowns.

Discuss what it will be like to travel, what they can expect once they arrive, and what activities you plan. With older children, you can even discuss expectations for their behavior and how to ensure they remain close during the travel day. Sure, there may still be some bumps in the road. But your family will feel more prepared, which goes a long way toward avoiding stressful situations.

#5. Scope Out Some Discounts And Perks

Believe it or not, many companies offer discounts for families traveling with children. You just have to ask. This is especially helpful if you’re looking for things to do besides theme parks. Many small business owners are willing to accommodate families and offer special discounts for reservations made in advance.

As you plan your trip, consider asking about discounts for:

  • Private guides
  • Tours
  • Transportation
  • Attraction admission fees
  • Restaurants

  • Some places even offer discounts on certain amounts of tickets or perks for booking ahead of time. This will help you stretch your travel budget and enhance your vacation experience. Remember, the worst they can say is no, so it doesn’t hurt to ask!

    Top Tips For Hassle-Free Air Travel

    Traveling by plane is stressful, even if you’re traveling solo. But factoring in a family can easily be an overwhelming experience. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to ensure your family is ready to take to the skies. Let’s look at some travel tips you can use when traveling by air with your children.

    Hacks For Traveling With Little Ones

    Traveling with babies and toddlers comes with unique challenges. Even though small children don’t take up too much space, their stuff sure does. Between the car seat and strollers, you may feel at a loss for how to maneuver a busy airport.

    To make flying with young children less stressful, use these hacks:

  • Consider applying for TSA PreCheck to avoid the crowded security line.
  • Minimize layovers to reduce the chance of getting stranded at the airport.
  • Buy a separate seat for your child to give your family more wiggle room.
  • Bring familiar comfort items, like a stuffed animal or blanket.
  • Avoid pre-boarding to reduce the time your little ones spend on the plane.
  • Confirm that their car seat and stroller are airline approved.
  • Reserve kids’ meals in advance for long-haul flights.
  • Pack plenty of snacks for the kiddos, to save money during your travels.

  • Consider using social stories to prepare toddlers for what flying will be like. Be prepared to experience meltdowns and deal with some side-eye from other passengers. But remember, this too shall pass, and young kids will benefit from the travel experience no matter what. You and your family are going on a great vacation, and any minor setbacks at the airport or on the plane will not hold you back from building great memories together!

    Hacks For Traveling With Older Kids

    Now that your children are older, you won’t have to worry about lugging heavy equipment. However, you must still do some things to ensure your big kids are prepared for the flight and have a smooth trip.

  • Eliminate uncertainty by talking about what to expect from travel day. This means discussing layovers with your kids and creating a game plan with other adult travelers to ensure everyone knows the game plan.
  • Many airlines have free water stations, so bring an empty water bottle to keep your big kids hydrated.
  • Buy a book about your destination and let them read about what they can expect.
  • Book a flight with Wi-Fi to avoid spending a lot of money on service charges.
  • Make it a special occasion by planning to buy an airport treat, like a giant cinnamon bun or ice cream, that will make them excited for the journey ahead.
  • Charge their electronics and pack chargers to keep them entertained.
  • Pack their item bag with their favorite snacks, some paper, and writing utensils so they can play quick games or draw in a pinch.
  • Start a conversation with them and share a meal to make long flights an opportunity to connect.

  • No matter who is in your travel party, give yourself plenty of time to arrive for your flight. Rushing will only stress out your entire family. Of course, some things are out of your control, so do your best to keep a level head. Your children will look to you to see how they should react, so staying calm will teach them how to remain cool under pressure. The more comfortable your family members are, the easier your travel day will be. So take the time to plan, and you’ll be rewarded with a smooth flight.

    Family Travel Tips For A Smooth Road Trip

    A family road trip is a great way to save money and now worry about dealing with the stressors of air travel. However, long trips come with many rounds of “Are we there yet?” and involve your kids being stuck in the car for hours.

    So whether you’re traveling with little ones, older kids, or a mixture of both, here’s what you can do to avoid any bumps in the road and keep your road trip on track.

  • Study the route ahead of time, so you know the way and can avoid wrong turns.
  • Schedule regular bathroom breaks and snack stops along the way to prevent cabin fever.
  • Consider traveling during odd hours to avoid rush hour.
  • Pack strategically with snacks, electronics, books, and new toys to occupy your kids.
  • Have older children pack their bags to ensure they have everything they need to stay comfortable.
  • Bring pillows, blankets, and other comfort items so children can get cozy while staying buckled in.
  • If you have a larger car, spread the children out the best you can.
  • Plan games and conversations, like a round of “Would you rather..” to pass the time.
  • Let the kids have a say in where you eat, what snacks you bring, and when you stop to keep the crankiness at bay.

  • Road trips can be stressful, but they are an excellent opportunity to build family bonds and save a little bit of cash on the way to your destination.

    Craft The Ultimate Travel Experience For Your Family

    Whether you’re heading to Disney or exploring a national park, family travel is an enriching, memorable experience for everyone. With some planning and ingenuity, you can ensure travel day runs smoothly, and your family vacation goes off without a hitch.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Stay on property at a resort with many amenities to keep the family together all vacation long.

    Typically, when you can offer incentives, ages nine months to about 18 months are considered the most difficult ages to travel with a child.

    Some common travel mistakes to avoid are booking last minute, overpacking, and not bringing enough snacks.

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