My Best Tips for Travelling With Kids
I'm writing this blog post from Phuket, Thailand, where we're halfway through our holiday with our daughters Priya (5), and Remi (18 months). This is the second time we've travelled to Asia with both girls, and I've learned a few things along the way.
1. Don't watch a movie
As soon as I let go of the idea of relaxing and watching a movie on a flight I started to enjoy them more. When I travel with my kids I don't even bother taking my headphones out of the packet. Instead, I spend the time entertaining them, feeding them, and picking their stuff up off the floor. I find that I enjoy it more, and I don't get frustrated that they're interrupting my watching time.
2. The tray table is the most exciting thing in the world
I don't have a solution for this one, but my 18 month old thinks the tray table is the best thing ever! I do find it a bit of a challenge to keep her from folding it up and down all flight.
Pre-kids we would spend a lot of our holiday time outside the hotel; wandering the shops with our reusable shopping bags, eating in different restaurants, and sightseeing. We've found that sort of thing is too much for our young kids, and on previous trips when we've tried to do too many things they've ended up getting sick. Now a perfect holiday day would be: breakfast in the hotel, swim, lunch in or near the hotel, swim, afternoon nap/ kids club, dinner in or near the hotel.
4. Be present
In the past year, I've learnt a lot about mindfulness and it's helped me immensely, both as a business owner and a mum. I try to keep work within work time, and not think about it other times. Being mindful is not just about putting down your mobile phone, it's filling your thoughts at the present moment with what's happening at the present moment. It's definitely easier said than done, and I'm still working on it, but mindfulness helps me to enjoy my holiday more.
5. Take grandparents
They're helpful, yes, but it's also awesome to have an opportunity to spend quality time with my mum and dad, away from the rush of traffic and work and other commitments. I love that my girls are getting to spend two weeks with their grandparents, and I wish that I had the same experiences with my grandparents.
6. Get some sleep
We always say that next time we go on holiday we'll book a hotel room with a separate bedroom, but we never do! My solution is to take the opportunity to go to sleep early! My fitbit tells me that last night I slept from 8:45pm- 6:45am and I feel amazing today!
Holidays are a great opportunity for me to test out some of the Global Baby products, here are some that I've found totally useful this holiday.
This stroller is excellent for travel because it's:
* Compact- fits easily into a taxi
* Has a great recline- perfect for naps on the go
* Has a generous sunshade- handy in sunny Thailand
* Is easy to maneuver- the footpaths here are pretty bumpy!
I keep this change mat in the bottom of our pram, it contains all we need for nappy changes when we're out; nappies, wipes and a nice clean change mat. Some of the public restrooms haven't had change tables, so I've had to change nappies on the floor, it's definitely handy to have The Roundabout!
We've used it to keep the sun off Remi when she's in the pram, as a blanket in the evening, and we even used it as a towel when we went for an impromptu swim in the sea one day.
The 400ml drink bottle is a great size for little hands, Remi has been easily drinking out of hers since she was about 1 year old. I try to remember to keep this bottle in the bottom of the pram or in my bag, to keep her hydrated in the heat.
This cool little carry on suitcase fits my laptop, plus some toys and changes of clothes for the kids. The best thing about it is there are additional pull-out wheels and a seat and handle, so a child can sit on there while you're rushing through the airport, and it provides a bit of entertainment when you're waiting at the gate. Our biggest problem is that the children fight over it! I think we'll need an additional one for our next trip!
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The answer depends on a few things; your family, your child's physical capabilities, and your child's size. There's no set age, but most children will move graduate from the cot between 18 months and 3.5 years.
This is a question that we hear a lot at Global Baby 'My toddler is rear-facing, but he looks so uncomfortable, is it OK to turn him forward-facing?'.
Their legs are scrunched up, and their feet are on the back seat. I wouldn't want to sit like that, would you?