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Etiquette When Travelling With Young Children

By: Anna Martin - Updated: 14 Apr 2013 | comments*Discuss
Child Travelling Young Children

Just because you have young children it does not mean that your days of enjoying travelling and holidays is long gone. Despite the extra baggage you may need to carry with you – buggy, changing bag, toys and endless snacks – travelling with children can be an enjoyable experience for everyone.

Involve Your Child In Your Travel Plans

Young children are easily overwhelmed by changes in their environment and to their daily routine, so involving them in the planning of your break or holiday will enable them to become used to the idea of new experiences, which in turn will encourage good behaviour. Although children can become excited at the prospect of a journey helping them understand how you will be travelling and what will happen once you reach your destination will encourage them to stay a little more grounded.

Children often get over excited during flights because they quickly become confused by a new environment. Visiting an airport before your planned journey may help them feel more comfortable when you travel. Restrictions in your child’s movement – as they must remain seated during a flight – will also cause anxiety and potential tantrums, so planning distractions like toys, books or healthy snacks is a good idea.

Dress Code

So that children become used to travelling encourage them to take interest in their appearance, when you set out on your trip. When young children are not dressed in their usual everyday attire they will sense that they are experiencing something more special. Dressing your child in clothes that are comfortable, versatile and attractive will set an exciting tone to your journey.

Your fellow passengers will also respond in a positive way to children who are neatly dressed and well-behaved, so encourage your child to view your travel experience as an occasion. Point out, to your child, that it is important to respect other passengers.

Keep Them Busy

Plane travel requires that you arrive at the airport hours before your departure time. Having to navigate check-in lines and security checks, with young children, requires that you anticipate your child’s needs correctly. Allow your child to move around the airport, with you, as much as possible – before and after check-in procedure. If your child usually sits in a buggy/stroller encourage them to walk and move around as much as possible. Your child will have to sit in their seat, throughout the duration of the flight, so free movement at all other times will help them overcome the restrictions.

Pack The Essentials

Although handy travel-sized snacks are readily available most of them are packed with a high sugar content. Instead of sweet confectionery snacks consider packing healthy options like carrot batons, raisins, breadsticks, rice cakes and other crunchy foods like cucumber. Grapes provide essential 5-a-day vitamins and are also a rehydrating option. Packing these snacks in a cool bag will also ensure they remain fresh and appetising.

When it comes to selecting games and toys, choose those that have little or no loose pieces that may easily get lost. Pick items that pack easily and don’t take up much valuable room in your travel bag. A reusable toy – like a wipe-clean board – will also provide entertainment on the return journey.

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