Since having children we haven’t been abroad as much as we did pre-children, but we have still managed at least one holiday abroad each year since Little Mr’s arrival. Our first holiday abroad with Little Mr was to the Dominican Republic at a mere 16 weeks old, then Tenerife followed by Lanzarote. We are currently preparing for our next holiday to Majorca. It will be our first holiday as a family of four so no doubt upon our return our top tips may have changed but here they are based on our previous holiday experiences.
Here are our 5 Top Tips:
1. Do not over pack
For our first holiday I packed enough clothes and nappies for around a month and brought most of it back unused. Unless you are travelling to some where that has little or no civilisation then you will be able to buy nappies etc there too if you happen to run out. As we have always gone to sunny warm places for holidays I have found that the little ones wont wear the vests they would at home as they will be too hot so pack half. This time we are taking just two suitcases and packing the Little’s clothes in with ours. We will be taking an umbrella buggy and the sling. We plan to put Little Mr in the buggy when tired or at the airport and carry Little Miss leaving one person to pull the two cases.
2. Leave your routine at home
Probably our best tip and the one we most look forward too is leaving our routine at home. we find that we quickly get into a ‘holiday routine’ later nights but longer or more naps in the day. we relax the rules completely and have a lot of fun doing so. We also aren’t the type of people who want to sit on the balcony each night from 7 whilst the little ones sleep, so we pop then in the buggy and head out. We haven’t found any adverse routine upon returning home bar the first day or so but even we are still out of sink with routine too.
3. Allow plenty of time
When we travelled to Lanzarote we were a little short on time when we flew home, as we were in a larger group and others wanted to get food. We were around one of the last families on the plane and so in a hurry we threw all of our belongings into the overhead locker. It dawned on us as we were heading up the runway we would have nothing to distract little Mr with or settle him. Cue screaming child until we were allowed to get our belongings down. So always allow lots of time (or put your bag under your seat).
4. Koo-di Buggy UV Sun Shield
This has made it to our list as it is one of the best holiday purchases that we have made. If you go on sun holidays with little ones I cant recommend it enough. I is perfect to pop on the buggy during walks out while the little ones sleep and gives complete cover so no repositioning all the time like you would an umbrella. We have used it many times by the pool as Little Mr slept. Although it really came into its own when we went to visited the island from the Bounty adverts when in the Dominican Republic and our boat broke down. There was no protection from the sun so whilst we waited what felt like an eternity to get the boat working again we pulled out the sun shield and popped it over Little Mr. This has already made it into our suitcase for our next holiday.
5. Plan Entertainment
We found by far our easiest plane journey (also our longest) was when Little Mr was only 16 weeks. I fed him on take off and landing, he slept and was easily entertained with a couple of baby toys. This year we are going to pre download most of the cbeebies back catalogue from BBC iplayer onto the ipad. We will also get Little Mr to choose a comic at the airport. He is just getting into games now to I will also pack a travel connect four plus the usual crayons and colouring that I take every where any how.
What are your top tips for family travel?