Nearly half of the families in Babierge’s November 2017 family travel survey feel the most stressful aspect of family travel is the very first leg – simply getting themselves, their babies, and their stuff through busy airports and then enduring a long, crowded flight with (sometimes cranky) little ones. Thirty-three percent feel most anxious about having the right gear for their children while another ten percent are concerned with baby safety at their accommodations.
Needless to say, vacations are where family memories are made. Here are some tips to reduce stress and travel anxiety so you can start making memories as soon as you leave home.
Pack Light – Have baby equipment, toys, games, diapers, baby food and a lot more delivered to your hotel or vacation rental.
Ship Gifts – Don’t travel with your Christmas or Hanukkah gifts. Instead have them shipped, already wrapped, to your destination. Then mail them to yourself before returning home.
Make Security a Sinch
Explain in Advance – Helping kids understand the security process and keeping it all postive reduces stress (for everyone). “They keep us safe. First we put our belonging through an x-ray machine and they take a picture of them. Then we walk through a little door.”
Cut in Line – Most checkpoints have family lines, which often means his often moves you to the front of the line.
Encourage toddlers to walk through on their own – If you are holding a toddler when you go through screening and the alarm beeps, you are both subject to additional search.
Optimize Your Flight
Timing is Everything – When is your baby the happiest? Book a flight with this sweet spot in mind.
Book up Front – It’s a lot easier to board and exit, especially with babes in arms, and the front tends to be quieter.
Window! – No one wants baby’s head bonked by someone barreling down the aisle. Window seats provide privacy, some support for your own head and arm, and even a little entertainment for babies and toddlers.
Pay for Peace – While it’s true you can hold your lap baby until age 2 on most airlines, booking an extra seat and placing your baby in an FAA-approved car seat, can make for a much more relaxing flight for everyone.
Dress for Success – Comfortable clothing keeps your kids happy. Adorable outfits can go a long way towards helping your fellow passengers overlook noisy kids on long flights.