Travelling with toddlers? That’s stressful. Thankfully guest writer, Sarah Jacobs, has a few helpful suggestions on how to make sure everyone has a great time on the journey to your destination, without relying on electronics.
The realities of travelling with toddlers
Travelling, even for adults can be quite stressful. Add kids to the trip and well, things get pretty interesting. As parents you usually get frazzled before getting to the fun. Especially when travelling with toddlers. Why? Maybe because they are young and they get restless all the time, or travelling may be such a change in their routines (and trust me, toddlers are into routines for the whole nine yards) that they get anxious about the new sounds, sights, and environment they are in. So what do parents usually get? A cranky, on-the-verge-of-a-meltdown toddler that would probably take the whole journey to console. Don’t fret, there’s no need to cancel that much planned and anticipated family vacation. Here are some tips on how to keep your toddlers entertained while travelling.
The easiest thing you might think to do would be to equip yourself with an iPad or a tablet and have it loaded to the brim with all the apps, movies, games, and songs that might your keep your toddler occupied until you reach your destination. Yes, it would save you from all the dread of having your kid drive you crazy, but letting children have too much screen time is not always the safest bet. There are tons of studies and research out there that show letting children spend more than two hours a day on an electronic device can cause mental and physical health issues. And while it might keep your toddler entertained for some time, the end result could be a kid with sore eyes and a cranky attitude. So, how do you keep your toddler entertained on trips while going gadget-free?
Stick to the routine
We know kids are sticklers to routines. It keeps them sane and makes them feel in control when their world is in flux. Most children feel anxious when travelling because there is a sudden change to their schedules. Keeping as close as possible to their routine would help a lot in relieving the stress that they would feel. While that may feel like an impossible thing to do while travelling, keep their sleeping time, eating and snack times, and activity times as close as possible to how they would go about their regular day, as best you can.
Load up the food
Have water handy to keep kids hydrated for the long travel. Make sure not to raise the sugar levels too high in order to avoid hyperactive kids with you. You can get some granola bars, cereals, some fresh fruits and yogurt prepared ahead to keep those little tummies full and happy. If you are pinched for time, there are a lot of pre-packed options that can be readily bought from many stores.
Bring some toys
Get your kids their own small backpack with their own toys and activities inside. Put some crayons, papers, and activity books in it to get their art on the go. There are mess free crayons that will make tidying up a breeze, or the markers that only draw on special paper. Look for small portable toys and activity books. Removable window stickers are lots of fun too. Look for smaller versions of favourite games intended for travel. Depending on the age or abilities of your little one, tic-tac-toe, match game, or even a fishing game might be fun.
Get a surprise gift
There is nothing that kids look forward to than getting a gift. Get them excited for the trip by hyping it up and telling them that you prepared something for them for the trip. Make it simple, yet fun and entertaining for them to use and play with during the trip. Having a new item to keep their attention will help fill up their time before reaching your destination.
Take it easy
Take cues from your child, just as you would do at home. If they are tired and fussing, switch gears from a stimulating activity to something quieter. Read a book, sing a song, look out the window and talk about the wonderful adventures you are going to have when you arrive. Cuddle, snuggle, tickle, stop for breaks, if your mode of transportation allows.
While travelling with toddlers can seem daunting, it can also be a great moment to cherish with the whole family. With a little preparation and some patience, you and your family will have a wonderful trip and create lasting treasured memories.
About the Author: Sarah Jacobs is an experienced writer who loves creating articles that can benefit others. She has worked as a freelance writer in the past making informative articles and fascinating stories. She has extensive knowledge in a variety of fields such as technology, business, finance, marketing, personal development, and more.
Check out her company here: Giftninjas.co