Going on a break with the family is really exciting. It’s a chance to bond and spend quality time together. However, before you get to your chosen destination it’s vital to plan everything out so that the travel side of things can be as stress-free as possible. With that in mind let’s look at some top tips to make travelling with the kids as enjoyable as it can be.
1. Do your research
Gone are the days of picking a place to visit based on what you like the look of. When you have kids, research is vital. When you’re childfree you can just go and explore, but that’s risky when children are involved.
For example, if you want to take the family on a city break to Johannesburg, make sure you find out which local restaurants, hotels and attractions are child-friendly, and where there’s plenty of family fun to enjoy too.
Read more about the best lodges for family safaris over here.
2. Precision packing
There are certain key steps to take when packing for a family trip. Draw up a list of the essential items first, then the stuff you think is important, and then the items that would be nice to take. Doing this will ensure you don’t miss anything, and you can match up what you’re packing with the research you’ve previously done.
For example, for a Safari in the Kruger National Park you’re going to want to make sure that you’ve got the right clothing, footwear and accessories to keep your kids comfortable. And an amazing camera of course! Read more about what to pack for an African safari.
3. Build the excitement
No child has ever said the words: “I can’t wait to go on that journey!” Whether it’s by car, bus, boat or plane, children are not good travellers generally. But if you can build up the excitement about where you’re going they’re far more likely to enjoy the journey to get there. From the moment you book, be enthusiastic about the break and metaphorically paint a picture for them.
For example, if you’re heading to the beautiful beaches in Cape Town, talk up the water sports, swimming and ice cream days. That way you’ll really build their excitement, and maybe take their mind off the less-exciting travel part.
4. Travel entertainment
As we’ve mentioned, the actual travel part is the most boring for kids on any family holiday. You can help to overcome this by being prepared and packing things to keep them entertained. Whether it’s a favourite toy, puzzle or game, you can’t have too many options up your sleeve, and if you’ve packed with precision you’ll have plenty of room for it all.
It’s nice to keep them off screens as much as you can on a break, so a colouring book or just a pad to draw on is great for your kids’ imaginations. Just be sure to learn how to remove ink stains from clothes so that their favourite top won’t get ruined when they inevitably draw on themselves!
There you have it, four ways to make travelling with kids fun! Avoiding dramas such as choosing somewhere inappropriate or ruining clothes can be overcome with the right preparation. It really is as simple as planning ahead, packing with precision and doing your research. After that’s done it’s on to the fun!
Find out about our top safaris for families in South African and Botswana over here.