July 18, 2019

Top Tips for Traveling with Children

From pre-teen power meltdowns to hungry toddlers, being on the road with children requires additional planning and flexibility. Throw in a food allergy or two, and having your parental ducks in a row becomes critical. I asked three road warrior moms for their top family travel tips. They had plenty of advice.

Infants: Social media consultant Linsey Knerl of 1099Mom is frequently on the road with children in tow.  A recent addition to her growing family has resulted in a number of strategies for surviving business travel with an infant. Her top tip? Bring a sling. There are plenty of situations, says Knerl, where a stroller simply falls short. Airport security lines and uneven urban terrain are two such examples. Knerl also favors healthy powdered drinks for older infants as a way to deal with TSA restrictions on liquids. She simply uses the free water offered by the airlines to mix up baby beverages in an empty bottle after her flight takes off. (See also: Pleasant Perks of Priority Pass Lounges)

Toddlers: Single parent and day-tripping telecommuter Debbie Dragon, co-founder of the content development firm Trifecta Strategies, dishes out high praise for dual-screen portable DVD players. On long road trips where she serves as both driver and navigator, Dragon straps one monitor to the back of each front car seat. Her two boys sit in the back and enjoy on-the-road entertainment on their personal viewing screens. According to Dragon, this avoids boundary drama and leaves her free to coordinate travel logistics from the front. She also recommends staying somewhere with separate bedrooms, a living area and kitchen facilities. This helps keep the family schedule on track and avoids the stress of finding restaurants that can deal with food sensitivities night after night.

Teens: When Catrell Cooney and her husband Mike of Cooney World Adventures took their three teenage sons around the world, their agenda was to teach them survival skills and self reliance. To accomplish this, they allowed the boys to solve certain family issues by themselves. When arriving at a new location, Cooney would turn the boys loose to find a place for the family to eat that evening while she and her husband secured accommodations. (See also: 6 Simple Tips for Vegan Travel) They would rendezvous later at an agreed-upon time and location, and move on with the next portion of the evening. To allow for independent activity time, Cooney turned the boys loose to explore desired venues that hadn’t been included on the family schedule whenever she and her husband were busy planning subsequent legs of their adventure.

Related Reading: How to Score Vacation Food at Affordable Prices

Photo Credit: W Silver