Top Tips for Travelling Abroad With Children

Credit: Paul Hanaoka via Unsplash

Travelling with the whole family creates memories that will last forever, but it can also be rather intimidating – especially if you have to travel long distances. If you have found yourself hesitating to go abroad because the idea of travelling with a baby or a young child seems like too much, there are ways to make the experience much easier.

There are a few things you can do to make your travel abroad with your children via plane much easier, from items you can buy to ideas you can use to organise and plan your journey.

Top Tips for Travelling Abroad With Children

Get a Good Night’s Sleep

The Flyaway Kids Bed is an outrageously cool new item that has been making the rounds on TikTok; an inflatable kid’s bed that rests up against the seat of the plane, it has an inflatable leg that props up in the leg room space. As it’s inflatable, it’s easy to wipe clean, which is always handy, as well as having barriers on the sides to prevent toys from rolling onto the floor.

There are a few things to consider if you decide to use this product, such as the kind of seat you have on your flight, for example, The Fly Away is not allowed in the emergency exit row – so plan accordingly.

Credit: Flyaway Kids Bed

Have Fun on the Plane

Make sure that you have enough entertainment for your child for when they aren’t sleeping. Sticker books are a great way to keep children busy and won’t make too much of a mess. If you happen to have a window seat, window cling stickers are great – all you have to do is remove them at the end of the flight.

Items like Melissa and Doug’s Water Wow books are a great alternative to colouring books and crayon boxes because the kids can use one chunky, water filled pen to colour in everything.

Travelling to different time zones is hard for children who are used to their specific home routine. If you want your child to stay awake for longer then opt for a lower carbohydrate and higher protein meal, while if you’re wanting to encourage sleep, then a higher carbohydrate meal is better.

Credit: Octav Cado via Unsplash

Bring the Right Food & Drink

It’s surprise that the majority of children get bored on long journeys. However, feeding boredom with sugar is not the answer as you’ll end up with fluctuations in their energy levels. Try to opt for healthier snacks with chopped up vegetables such as carrot sticks and cucumber sticks with a dip.

A good quality, insulated water bottle is imperative as dehydration in an air-conditioned plane is often an issue on long journeys. Air travel means low humidity and that can also lead to dehydration. It’s tough enough travelling by air with children – so ensure they’re hydrated. Steer clear of juice unless you’re diluting it and use water to wet the nostrils and mouths of babies.

At altitude, and especially as you land, expansion in the middle ear and sinuses can cause discomfort and even pain. Older children could chew on xylitol-based chewing gum whilst babies and toddlers could suck on a bottle or sippy cup to ease this discomfort.

Constipation can also be an issue when travelling, either due to dehydration or from eating different foods or drinking different water. Ensuring your child is hydrated is obviously important but so is having some natural remedies for constipation like prune juice (which can be added to water), prune puree and flaxseed which can be really helpful in moving things along.

baby-foodDon’t Dread the Nappy Change

This is the moment most parents dread on a plane – but with the right planning, it doesn’t have to be as bad as it sounds. A super-handy product is the Skip Hop Diaper Changer, which folds nicely into a purse style with a handle when it is closed, but folds out into a wipeable changing pad when you open it.

The Diaper Changer has strategically placed pockets to hold the basics, like your nappies and wipes, but also has spots for an emergency change of clothes. For soiled clothing, Munchkin Arm and Hammer Diaper Bags are handy; they’re infused with baking soda to naturally eliminate odours. It is also handy in case you have to store something in your own personal bag, so it doesn’t get too smelly.

Credit: Michal Bar Haim via Unsplash

Remember Layovers & Possible Long Walks

Remember that your pram will be checked in at the gate – and there’s not always a guarantee that you’ll be given your pram back during any layovers or transits, even if you ask. Make sure you have a back-up plan in case you find yourself with a tired child having to walk to another gate or back through security.

For smaller children, you can use a baby carrier, but for toddlers and older children, a way for them to stroll along is handy. Giving them their own carry on such as a Trunki is a great way to make them feel special for having their own suitcase as well as providing a way to wheel your child along a busy, large airport.

Credit: Trunki

The Whole Family Needs an ESTA

Travelling to the USA soon? You’ll need an ESTA to enter the country. The ESTA is a travel authorisation that is a faster and easier alternative to a regular visa.

It eliminates the need to visit an embassy, which is another plus when it comes to travelling with the whole family. While you decide which part of the USA you would like to travel to with your children, make sure you apply for your ESTA for every single member of the family.

Make sure that you have everyone’s passports in order and that everyone has an ESTA. Each family member is required to have both, regardless of age. The ESTA online application makes it easy to apply for the whole family as a group as the information only needs to be filled in once. With group applications, there is one point of contact for every ESTA application, which makes it much easier to control the travel documents needed. Once everything is set up, you can head out on your holiday with the family in tow.

Credit: Natalya Zaritskaya via Unsplash

Read More:

Want more information and inspiration on everything parenting and lifestyle? Just hit ‘Like’ on our Baby Facebook page, and ‘Follow’ on our @BabyMagazineUK Twitter account and you’re all set!