Yes, it’s vacation time… nope just kidding. You are a parent traveling with a child. It’s an 18 hour long flight, jet lag, screaming toddlers, judgy passengers, non-helpful flight attendant and bad airline food. It feel likes the halloween version of vacation.
Trust us, we know how you feel and it’s really not that bad and in this post we have some tried and tested tips for you. By the time our son was two and a half, he’d already been on 40 international flights with us, spanning some 19 different airlines. So, we have some decent experience—and in this blog, we’re going to share a few of the lessons we learned along the way. (We’ve also embedded a few links to some favorite products for air travel, so that you can click and buy them instantly.)
Traveling with your family? First book a suite (hey, we are on vacay we need some space from the kids), then get the over-priced breakfast at the hotel (are those really eggs?) and then have to rent a car because the hotel right in the middle of the city was way out of budget. OR just make your life easier and book an Airbnb: wallet and sanity intact.
Today, there are more lodging options than ever before, especially thanks to platforms such as Airbnb. And we’re here to tell you that, even if you’ve got kids in tow, Airbnb can make your travels much easier and more pleasant.
Quick background: On our most recent trip, we had roughly 100 different destinations, and we used Airbnb for about 85 of them. On the whole, it was an incredibly positive experience, not least because we learned so much about how to use Airbnb effectively.
When you’re in a foreign country or an unfamiliar city, it’s important to be ready for anything. For example, you may wish to take a short trip by bus, either as part of a tour or simply to get around town. Bus travel with a child has its perks, including affordability, but also significant drawbacks—especially when you’re traveling in a bus with a toddler.
We love traveling by train, especially long distance. If we had to pick our favorite mode of getting around, we’d pick train travel in a heartbeat. We find it to be far more comfortable than plane, bus, or even car rides; there’s more space to get up and walk around, and no turbulence you have to deal with! Most trains get you where you need to go pretty fast, yet there’s also ample opportunity to look out your window and take in the scenery.
This is EXCLUSIVE content from our book, How To Travel With Kids (Without Losing Your Mind)
It took us a few months during our 9-month trip around the world with our 2-year-old son to brave a walking tour with him. We had been too nervous to try a walking tour, but after taking our first tour – and surviving – we discovered we had been missing out. From that moment on, at practically every new city we visited, from Buenos Aires to Rome to Lima to Barcelona, we signed up for walking tours with our son.
After traveling the world as a family of three for 9 months straight, we had to cover three daily meals and snacks, all on the road. Eating out can get pretty costly, and it can be difficult to stay on budget, especially when visiting different countries. We found ways to keep our food costs in check, that you can use for a vacation of any length.
Over nearly nine months of international travel with our 2-year old, we obviously took our fair share of flights—roughly 40, if you’re keeping score. But we spent plenty of time in the car, as well, renting vehicles in several different cities and exploring our surroundings via automobile, always with our little man in tow. (We also had several tour guides who carted us around, so our experience in this regard was quite varied.)
This is every parents’ nightmare when traveling with children – their sleep routine will be disrupted, no one will get any sleep, and everyone will be miserable. This rings true especially when you know you’ll be crossing time zones. But, from experience, we can tell you that children are very adaptable, and worrying about their sleep schedule shouldn’t keep you from traveling. Yes, you may have some trying times, but overall, things will likely go more smoothly than you thought. We’ve compiled a few tips that we’ve learned along the way and that can help you feel more confident when traveling with young kids.
We love snorkeling because it’s a great way to see underwater wildlife with your family. When people hear we have taken Aarav snorkeling, they think we literally went snorkeling with a toddler, which is not possible, he’s too young. He has, however, accompanied us on several snorkeling tours, including in the Galapagos, Bali, the Great Barrier reef, and Grand Cayman, among others.