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Temi Olajide: How to Enjoy Travel with Your Kids

I don’t know how you cope with traveling with your children from such a young age. I honestly can’t deal. Temi, I traveled with my 18-month-old son last year, and I vowed that no more holidays until he is five years old. In fact, everyone knew there was a baby on board. He kept removing the wig of the passenger sitting next to us, then he wanted the freedom to roam around the plane. By the end of the flight, I had a migraine.

Temi Olajide

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The long holiday is fast approaching, and many parents are already dreading traveling with their kids, either to their grandparent’s place, or for a family vacation.

I was having a conversation with a client a while ago, and she said: “I don’t know how you cope with traveling with your children from such a young age. I honestly can’t deal. Temi, I traveled with my 18-month-old son last year, and I vowed that no more holidays until he is five years old. In fact, everyone knew there was a baby on board. He kept removing the wig of the passenger sitting next to us, then he wanted the freedom to roam around the plane. By the end of the flight, I had a migraine.”

I sympathised with her. I could understand why she was not in a hurry to travel with her son again.

Now, I understand traveling with kids can be stressful, with the unending chant of Mummy, I want to pee. Mummy I’m hungry. Mummy, I’m bored, and the countless Are we there yet questions – it can be extremely tiring.

But, trust me, with adequate planning, traveling with kids can actually be fun (yes, I said it) and even fulfilling. Plus, the experience you expose your kids to cannot be traded for anything.

A travel trip can either be by road, air, or any trip on average over two hours.

Before the trip:

  • Prepare yourself physically and psychologically.
  • If you’re travelling by air, check in on time so the kids are calm and well rested before take off. A restful mum makes for a restful baby.
  • Put and organise all the things you will need for the trip in one bag.
  • Speak with your child if he/she is at least a year old, or older. Explain what good behaviour is and the rules of travel. It is okay to promise a reward for good behaviour (rewards are ideal until age four).
  • Having a pushchair or baby carrier for babies/toddlers can be an advantage, as they can get tired or restless from walking. You can also choose to put your baby on your back.
  • Get your toddlers a fancy suitcase. This will give them a sense of belonging.
  • Change their diapers or ensure they go to the toilet before setting out or boarding. You want them to be settled the first few hours into the trip. Also, take an empty bottle or potty along for road trips to avoid stopping at unsafe areas.
  • Feed your children before travel; you don’t want to deal with a hungry child on a long trip.

During the trip:

  • As soon as you get into the car or plane, organise everything you will need for the trip – extra clothing, wipes, baby food, snacks, water, etc. Everything should be within reach.
  • Choose seats wisely for plane travel. Prioritise easy access to the toilet.
  • Bring their favorite toys, download lots of games, coloring books, writing pads to scribble to avoid boredom.
  • Teach your kids manners – encourage them to talk instead of crying or shouting. If they behave badly in public, take them to the toilet to correct them.
  • If you’re taking a night trip, a bedtime routine will be beneficial. Some mums change their kid’s outfits to pajamas to put kids in a restful mood (but note that this can only work for a child that has a bedtime routine in place, prior to the trip).
  • Take their favourite foods and snacks with you, preferably non-sugary snacks.
  • Reduce water intake before and during the trip to avoid frequent use of toilet/change of diapers.
  • Remember to take at least two spare outfits, as kids can easily mess themselves up during travel.

Above all, pray to God ahead of your trip that He will grant you favour and an enjoyable stress-free trip. Trust me, this works.

I hope you’re finally excited to go on a trip with your kids. Remember, your kids may not recollect the number of toys they had or the fancy meals they ate or the beautiful clothes they wore, but they will always remember their experiences, especially the fun travels.

Temi Olajide is a Certified Child Sleep Consultant and Child Psychologist.Co-founder of Association of Child Sleep Consultants of Nigeria and a member of International Association of Child Sleep Consultants.Founder of Mummyclinicc, an online platform that provides strategies & result driven solutions to the challenges of child rearing and helps mothers to successfully combine the requirements of life and motherhood while responding correctly to the peculiarities of the digital age. Temi is the author of Wi-Fi Kids and Analog Parents, a comprehensive book that equips parents on how to raise well-rounded kids in the digital age. www.mummyclinicc.com,Instagram @mummyclinicc

1 Comment

  1. Ajala & Foodie

    June 21, 2019 at 5:39 am

    Reading this i pictured talking to my 14 month old about good behavior while traveling and i almost LOL! The girl does not understand. Yes, i correct on things like hitting people but how am i to communicate a whole good behavior lecture prior to the trip? My daughter has done well so far on plane rides. We have only done short flights though. We started with just direct flights at 6 months then we moved up to single connection domestic flights at 1. Our next goal is an international flight but men strongly believe parents should invest in lounge access even if you fly economy you can get day passes. They are life savers with kids and many have kids play areas. We never used our lounge passes until our daughter came into the picture. Now! We are not going without it. For car trips that one is still a work in progress at 6 months it was a total nightmare. We went on a 5 hr (each way) road trip last month at about the 4hr mark. She became antsy and will just cry to be out of her car seat. I guess the car seat restriction does not exist in flights so we are fine with that. I wonder what will happen though when are desire to explore supersedes her fear of strangers. For now her fear of not being with mummy or daddy keeps from trying to walk up and down the aisle.

    3

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