When you get asked what the main differences are between life before becoming a parent and life afterward, the two that probably jump to mind are a) how easy it was to jump in the car and go shopping and b) how holidays used to be relaxing. The latter is the more annoying out of the two, for sure.
After kids come along, holidays become so much hassle. But it doesn’t have to be. Exploring the world one place at a time with kids by your side can be the most amazing experience ever. All you need is a few tips and tricks to help you make your next holiday totally hassle-free.
- Plan, Always Plan
If you get it right, the hardest part of your planning will be choosing the destination. The rest can be relatively straight forward, especially if you get an expert in escorted travel on board, like Travelsphere; they can tailor your holiday to suit your needs. If you are stuck on the destination, then make a shortlist and then look at what family-awesome things they offer. Knowing what you are doing, or what there is to do, will take a huge chunk of stress out of your holiday.
- Have A Test Run
Going away on holiday can be daunting, especially if this is your first family or your last one was a total nightmare. We don’t mean, jump on a plane and go for a trial run, we just mean pack up the car, take on a long-haul drive and enjoy a long weekend somewhere. This will allow you to see how your children cope, what makes them bored, what stimulates them and get them used to a change of environment. By the time you get to your actual holiday, voila, you’ll know exactly what needs tweaking and what problems will need resolving.
- Packing Need Vs Want
To make this as simple as possible, when it comes to packing, pack what you need and what your kids want. Luckily, most destinations will have everything you need there, so you can pack light. That way, if you do need something, you can just pick it up there. As for your kids, to make it that much more hassle-free, let them help you pack their clothes. Let them to most of it, with you overseeing. This will stop them starting a world war when they realize they forgot to put something in their suitcase.
- In-Flight Entertainment
This is where the torture is most likely to kick in, especially if you are going to be flying for over three hours or so. It may even be the one thing that is putting you off the whole holiday experience. Don’t give up, though. Just pack some things that will keep them entertained (some of which you will have figured out in your trial run). Technology is the biggest winner on this front. Gaming apps, films, and TV shows. However, don’t ignore a good old fashioned coloring book or crossword pad. These can eat away time too.
- Jump Into The Culture
If there is one thing that will keep your kids happy it is peaking their curiosity, which is so easily done by getting involved in the local culture of a place. Languages, thoughts, foods, music, everything and anything you can think of. The sights, the sounds, the smells; all of this will make your blow your kids mind and keep them entertained. Not only this, but it will be amazing educationally as well as building character. All you need to do is keep an open mind and explain to your kids why things are done differently where you are; help them embrace differences instead of judging them.
- Enjoy The Ride
Look, you’re an adult, you know that life doesn’t go to plan (or even anywhere near the plan) and that acceptance will stand you in good stead when it comes to a hassle-free holiday. Yes, you may have an itinerary or a schedule to help you, but if you stray away from this, don’t worry. If you kids get totally immersed in something else, run with that. Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans, right? Of course, if you are not one who is comfortable improvising, then why not have a Plan B and C ready, just in case. Just remember, kids are meant to be curious and spontaneous, it is a natural urge inside them, so go along with it and you’ll enjoy a far more enjoyable break.