*This is a collaborative post.
If you follow me on here and social media you might be aware that we’ve recently had our first family holiday abroad. We had the BEST time and I’m now desperate to get away again. I always thought traveling with two young children would be an absolute nightmare but actually it was a wonderful experience (except the nights!), we made such incredible and magical family memories and we’ll definitely be trying to get away more.
We’ve had a few weekends away and now after our first holiday abroad I thought I’d put together a few of our tips on how to make breaks away with little ones easier and fun for all.
Don’t Over Pack
This is something that is ridiculously easy to do when you have a three year old and one year old and I for one am definitely a culprit of overpacking in the past. Amazingly, I now take less for the four of us than I used to for just the Hubby and I. Make a list of everything you’ll need and try to stick to it, I like to plan both mine and the girls outfits for the time we’re away to help reduce the amount of clothing we pack. Take just enough nappies, you can always purchase more if you run out. Don’t take a million bottles and sip cups, they take seconds to wash whilst away and it WILL save oodles of weight and space in your luggage. Downsize your toiletries, you’re really not going to need a full size bottle of shampoo and conditioner! You’ve already got your hands full with children to juggle and possibly a pushchair or two so make your life easier with less luggage.
A Few of their Favourite Things
I’ve said pack light, but this doesn’t mean you can’t take a few of your child’s favourite ‘small’ things. Both my girls have a love for muslin cloths so we’re always sure to carry two for each of them (you don’t want to see Willow without her ‘noo-noo’), luckily they’re very small and light so barely take up any space. We’ve recently bought an iPad and this has become a staple for long journeys as well as the headphones, we always make sure to have the iPad stocked up with plenty of child friendly apps and films (just don’t forget to have it fully charged too!!). This definitely helped us when both our flights were delayed on our recent trip! At the moment Allana is still a little young to pick anything to bring along but we do let Willow pick one small toy, of late it has been her favourite ‘baby’ which happens to be the right size to fit in her hand luggage. You can easily pick up small cheap travel colouring packs or ‘surprise’ toys to keep them amused during a long wait, flight or drive.
Snacks and Drinks
Now, don’t forget, if you’re flying their is a limit to how much liquids you can take onboard, so do be mindful of this. Do check with your airlines though as some will allow a certain amount of baby milk and purees through security. Luckily, they will allow you to take through dry snacks so be sure to have plenty. If like us you get delayed they’ll be an absolute lifesaver, we tend to even pack a little treat for those moments when a rice cake or raisins just won’t cut it. Of course you can buy food and drink at the airport and on holiday, but lets be honest, its uber expensive and the kids will want EVERYTHING if you take them into the airport shops. If you’re going abroad its also very reassuring to have plenty of snacks on hand that you know your children will eat so pack plenty in your suitcases too (luckily they’re usually feather light so don’t take up much of your weight allowance!!).
Family Friendly Accommodation
When it comes to booking a place to stay it can be far too tempting and easy to book a gorgeous hotel, cottage or villa and forget about requirements for the littles. Try looking for somewhere that offers family friendly accommodation like Tots to Travel, again this should save on your packing as usually they’ll provide a lot of necessities. No more need to bring a travel cot, steriliser, children’s cups, cutlery and sometimes theres even a stroller available too! Plus theres the added bonus of safety, you won’t be worrying about stair gates or bed guards when your accommodation already has them to hand. I think the littles are always much more settled when we’re staying somewhere aimed at families, theres usually much more for them to do, toys to play with and even the decor can be pretty fun and colourful for them to look at too.
Relax and Have Fun
Going away with young children, whether its a staycation or a holiday abroad, will always have a few stresses. Toddlers will have tantrums, Babies will teeth, Husband’s will snore, Mummy’s won’t sleep but DON’T dwell on those moments. Make memories, enjoy the time as a family, switch off, forget about the stresses of home and work, have fun, be silly, treat yourselves and embrace the magic and madness of holidaying as a family.
Do you regularly go away as a family? Do you have any top tips for holidaying with children?