You can start planning your first international trip with your children by examining what interests them. If you have children who are just beginning to learn about the world, it’s best to prepare them for the challenges ahead. You should be prepared for a lack of interest, especially during the first few days, so the destination should have a good balance of places to visit and fun activities. Here are some tips for international travel with kids:
Don’t expect your child to behave as you do. You will probably encounter sleep disturbances, meltdowns, and other frustrating behaviors. Moreover, they’re less likely to adapt to the new environment if you let them take naps during the day. Try to get them up by 7-8 pm local time, but try not to give them naps during the day. A good alternative is to keep them occupied with high-energy activities on the plane.
Besides international travel with kids, parents should choose a destination that will be familiar to their children. In the case of a new country, avoid developing countries, as these are not safe for children to travel. Instead, consider countries that are child-friendly, such as Scandinavia and the United Kingdom. Parents can take their kids to these places and enjoy their culture and scenery. They can also help their children make new friends and develop new interests.
Passports should be updated, at least two months before your planned trip. Make sure that you get them notarized parental consent. Also, remember to bring copies of your child’s birth certificate, medical insurance card, and passport ID page. Also, you should have copies of your child’s documents with you, especially if they’re traveling alone. Otherwise, your child could be a victim of child abduction and trafficking.
Children can pass time in the plane by playing with a small toy or watching TV. It can also be helpful to buy them a book that is related to the destination. This way, they’ll get accustomed to the time difference and culture of the new country. If possible, try to involve them in the planning process. Not only will this be educational for them, but they’ll also feel like they’re part of the experience.
Another tip is to get to the airport early, so that you don’t miss the flight. Remember that kids tend to get sleepy while traveling, so make sure you give them enough time to get used to the new environment. Taking your children on a flight can be stressful for both you and them. By getting there early, you’ll have the opportunity to get a good seat and settle in before take-off. You’ll save precious time at the airport!
Always remember to carry hand sanitizers and wipes with you. If your kids don’t sleep, pack a light coloring book or deck of cards. Also, consider buying a tablet device loaded with kid-friendly games and movies. These can keep the kids entertained on long flights. And don’t forget the diaper bag! It’s never too early to start preparing for your international trip with kids.