Summer Holidays Made Easy
Ready, Set, Go?
Gone are the days where you and your other half could book a late deal and grab your passports on the way out the door to your chosen destination. All of a sudden you’re the parents on the plane with the screaming toddler that no one wants to sit next to, when did that happen? While no amount of planning can guarantee a tear free family holiday, with a bit of careful organisation, you can minimise stress and return home without feeling like you just spent two weeks in a foreign nightmare.
If you’re lucky enough to be returning to a fantastic holiday destination, catering to all you children’s needs and more then you will already know the true value in booking a child friendly destination. If like many, you’re still in the process of finding your ideal family summer holiday, get the basics right and you’ll have a far better chance of wanting to do it all over again next year rather than returning home, never to venture out again until the children have moved out of home.
Keep these tips in mind when searching for your ideal holiday choice:
✔ First decide on your preferred holiday, beach, countryside, camping, glamping or city break?
✔ How long is the trip? Will you and your children cope with a long haul flight or lengthy car journey?
✔ Is your choice family friendly and do they offer age appropriate facilities?
✔ Is there a time difference, will your children adjust easily to a new routine?
✔ Do you need any additional vaccinations and are there any infection risks in that particular country that may have a greater impact on small children?
✔ Once you’ve selected your ideal holiday, research other families’ experiences on holiday advice websites to make sure that you’ve made the right decision. Contact the resort directly if you have any questions or concerns
✔ Make a packing list, stick to it and pack a week in advance, leave only the essentials to the end, reducing the last minute rush
✔ If your children will be using any kids clubs or childcare facilities, make sure you’ve labelled all their items before you venture off.
✔ Make sure that camera and phone batteries are fully charged before you go
✔ Label all luggage including small bags and items for carry on
✔ Pack a small first-aid kit to have on hand for little accidents while you’re away
Safe and Sound
From missing passports to lost children, holidays can quickly go from fun to failure in the blink of an eye. By taking a few simple steps towards keeping your family and belongings safe, you can rest assured that you’ve done your best to ensure a trouble free holiday.
✔ Be sure to take photocopies of your passports and important documents and keep them separate from the originals
✔ Pack a change of clothes for everyone and keep in your hand luggage so that a lost suitcase doesn’t mean you can’t start your holiday while the lost item is located and returned to you
✔ If you are going to a busy location, you may wish to give your children ID/safety bands that contain your contact information in the event that your child wonders off or is separated from you at any point.
✔ If travelling in Europe, you can all 116000 to report your child missing across 14 EU countries, visit www.hotline116000.eu for further information.
✔ Keep current photographs of your children on your phone or with your documents so that in the event of them going missing, you are able to act quickly
✔ If water safety is an issue, be sure that you have all the necessary swimming aides with you and educate your children about swimming safety.
✔ You may wish to look at Google street view to familiarise yourself with your destination
✔ You may wish to leave a spare key to your home with a key safe company or a family member / neighbour in case of emergencies
✔ Make sure that you have some snacks and drinks available as a backup if your journey takes longer than expected
✔ If you have very young children or children who suffer from ear pain during take-off/landing, make sure you take along a bottle or some sweets to suck or chew on during those periods
✔ It can be handy to pack some analgesia and a thermometer for peace of mind, children are vulnerable to subtle changes and may not adapt as well as adults to different food and drink. Their immune systems are also not as well developed as yours so they may be more susceptible to illness while on holiday.
✔ Travel insurance is a must, make sure you choose the appropriate level of cover for your whole family
Relax and Enjoy
Family holidays are an opportunity to make memories and spend quality time together. By planning and minimising the stress well in advance of your trip, you should be able to enjoy it and look forward to planning your next holiday.
Distraction is the best technique in many situations so be sure to pack some toys and games to keep the children occupied on long car journeys, at airports or on flights where they need to sit still for long periods. You may wish to make a rough schedule for each day, flexible enough for you to take in new and unexpected experiences but structured enough that you can talk to the children about what you’ll be doing each day and this also gives you as parents a level of confidence when going into the unknown!
Many parents have gone off on holiday returning in need of another holiday just to unwind from the stress of venturing off in the first place. This needn’t be your experience, by keeping it simple, planned and with a bit of structure, you will all be able to have a family experience worth remembering for all the right reasons.
Returning home can also be a stressful experience. You may wish to make some meals ahead of time and freeze them for your return. Having some items available that are quick and easy to heat up or pop into overtired, hungry mouths will ease the return home and life can get back on track.
If your rubbish collection takes place while you’re away, ask a neighbour to put yours out for you and offer the same to them when they go off on their holiday. You may also wish to use a car valet service at the airport so that your vehicle is ready to go when you are and you are not waiting for busses or trekking across parking lots in the dark , searching for your car while the kids are in melt down.
However carefully researched the material in this information guide might be, it is not possible to guarantee its accuracy or completeness. The author and distributor therefore accept no liability for any inaccuracies or any loss or damage arising from the use of or reliance on details obtained from this information guide. Please ensure that you check the current government travel recommendations relating to the information shared within this guide.
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