We recently got back from an amazing family trip to Cuba. Given that flight was 9 hours and we all survived, I wanted to share with you my top tips for traveling with a toddler!
I was a little anxious about the flight and how we’d all manage to get there in one piece. Funny how when you become a parent you worry about things you never even considered when traveling before!
1 – Travel bag of fun = essential!
I have such fun memories of traveling when I was younger.
My mum would give us little rucksacks that we couldn’t open until we were on the plane. They would be full of books, colouring, games, toys and snacks. I don’t remember feeling bored especially at a time when screens in the headrests were a luxury!
We were flying with Virgin so I knew the entertainment available on the plane would be good. We also had an iPad stacked up with films, tv shows and games to keep Isla occupied on the long journey.
I also wanted to make sure that we had activities for the airport, on the transfer and in the hotel as well.
So when I saw a company that did this all for me I couldn’t resist!
The company is called Keep Em Quiet, they provide filled rucksacks with various options based on age and journey length. I ordered a 2 year old long haul bag and it arrived with 9 activity items (books, colouring, stickers, felt, games, playdoh and bubbles) as well as 4 snacks. It was fab and definitely worth the £15 I paid.
I chose to top it up with some more sticker books, puzzles and a magnetic scribbler.
I’ll be honest for Isla these two items were my top picks as they allowed for us to interact with her the most and sometimes they were even enough to lure her out of the pool when she started to look like a little prune!
2 – Break it up
Another thing I’m really happy we did was to break up the journey a little to make it more manageable.
Our flight was at 10am meaning we had to be at the airport realistically by 7am.
Ten people traveling together definitely takes longer to get through check in and security!
Given that the airport we were traveling from is 2 hours from our house on the train I dreaded the idea of waking Isla up in the middle of the night to travel to the airport.
So we decided to stay at an airport hotel the night before. It was more money but we all got a full night sleep which made the journey more bearable.
Traveling same day is also dependent on trains actually running on time in the mornings (which as a commuter I didn’t have a lot of faith in!)
3 – Don’t sweat the small stuff
This is my biggest lesson not just for traveling with a toddler but in life in general.
Things won’t always go to plan!
So you just have to go with the flow and just expect things to be a little upside down when you get home while you all readjust.