During the last three and a half years we’ve done a fair bit of dashing about with small people in tow. First a baby who then became a toddler, then a baby and a toddler and now two toddlers. We are not popular with other passengers!
We’ve travelled by plane, ferry, bus, train, underground, car and walked quite a long way too!
Each of our children have very different personalities and temperaments so what has worked to keep one happy often doesn’t work for the other.
Nowadays whenever travelling we try to:
- Carry plenty of non sugary snacks like crackers and fruit. Things that take a long time to eat or that can be eeked out of over a bit of time and wont make too much mess.
- Have a change of clothes for each child and at least a different top for me.
- Carry a sling. A child that is strapped to you is less likely to get into trouble and generally happier than one in a pushchair because they have a good view and feel safe and secure. We always check our pushchair in at airports and use a sling instead. It means no queing for lifts, extra luggage space in the buggy bag and less chance that the pushchair will be damaged.
- Always take a couple more nappies than we think we need.
- Sticker books, Crayons and writing pads are all very handy before you get to the big guns of electronic devices like iPads and other tablets. It makes life easier if each child has exactly the same.
- Check about three times that the electronic devices are i. fully charged ii. that all items are downloaded rather than in the cloud (i.e not available offline)
- Always take raincoats. We’ve been caught out by rain a couple of times on hot holidays abroad.
- Carry our Steel drinking bottles and one of those tiny concentrated bottles of cordial instead of buying lots of sugary drinks or bottles of water.
- Take our own car seats. Hired ones have never been great.
- Always take our own travelcot. Most that have been provided have been a bit smelly or dirty.
- Allow lots and lots of extra time
A really old digital camera has become a favourite toy that our girls like to use to take their own photos. It seems to keep them busy for quite a while too.
All these things have helped us survive flights up to 4hours and long car journeys with overnight ferries to France but we’re about to face our biggest challenge so far. A long haul flight with a 1yr old and a 3yr old.
All suggestions and tips for the flight and dealing with jet-lagged children will be gratefully received.
Wish us Luck!!!