The Single Parent’s Guide To Traveling With Children: Tips And Hints

If you are a newly single parent, the idea of taking your children away for a vacation might be a little scary. Going on vacation should be fun and exciting, not stressful and tiring. The last thing you want is to come back from vacation feeling worse than you did when you left. Traveling with your children is never easy, but there are ways you can make the experience run smoothly. Here is a single parent’s guide to traveling with children.

9 Tips for Traveling With Children

Traveling With Children
Photo by: Ian D. Keating

Talk to your children about flying

One of the biggest problems you will find when you are traveling with children is that they fear flying. Before you go on vacation, it is important that you talk to your children about traveling. Let your children ask any questions they want to. You have to be ready to answer their questions. The point is you need to make them feel calm about flying. Tell them that there is nothing to worry about and that they will be fine.

Make sure that you take toys and distractions

It is important that you have small games, toys and distractions with you on the plane. That way, you can use the toys to distract your children when you are in the air. On some airlines, there will be a movie showing while you fly. If there is a movie, you have a perfect distraction for your children. If there is not, you might need to play some games or tell stories to entertain your kids. Occupying your children will mean that they don’t have time to worry about flying.

Consider traveling with another family

When you travel alone with your children, it can be a huge stress. If you know another family, with kids the same age as yours, you should consider traveling with them. If you travel as a group, you will have other adults to talk to during the vacation. It also means that there are more adults to help with childcare, than there would be if it were just you. You can take turns looking after all the children so that everybody gets a chance to relax.

Plan a few things for each day of your trip

When you travel with children, you need to plan just a few things each day. If you plan to go sightseeing, you should not plan to see too many different attractions. You might want to pack a million things into one day, but trying to do so will be a nightmare. When you are out with children, all manner of things can happen. Children move at a slower pace than adults. That means that they take longer over looking at things and exploring their environment. You need to allow some time for your children to explore.

Check your children for allergies

Before you go on vacation, you need to know whether your children have any allergies. If your children are allergic to something and you don’t know about it, it could be a disaster. Take your children to the doctor before you go on your break and get him or her to test them for allergies. In doing so, you ensure that your children will be safe when they are on vacation. You will also need to make sure that you and your little ones have vacation insurance. That way, you can cover the cost of medical bills if one of you gets ill abroad.

Make sure everybody gets vaccinations

When you go to the doctor’s surgery, make sure that both you and your children get any vaccinations you need before you travel. If you are traveling in certain regions, you will need exotic vaccinations to ensure that you don’t get diseases. Many people forget about vaccinations when they are traveling. Small children have a low immune system. That means that young kids are susceptible to contracting diseases. It is your duty as a parent to protect your children. Your doctor will be able to tell you what vaccinations you need for your vacation. He or she can also give you some advice about traveling with children and how to keep them safe.

Make sure your children will like the food

If your children are fussy eaters, you need to think about what they will eat on vacation. Check out the menu at your hotel and see whether your children will enjoy the food that is on offer. Many hotels offer a children’s menu of simple food, such as fish and chips or pasta. If your hotel does not offer this service, you still have options. You can order takeaway food no matter where you are in the world. Pizza delivery in Dubai, for example, is quick and easy, especially if you are ordering food to a hotel.

Keep sunscreen on you at all times

Children have sensitive skin. Your skin can likely sustain a lot of heat and sunlight. Your children’s skin is much more delicate than yours. If you are going to a country where it is hot most of the time, you need to make sure that you pack some sunscreen. Carry a bottle of high SPF sunscreen in your bag at all times. You should apply sunscreen to your children’s skin every hour or so. If your children go swimming, ensure that you cover them in sunscreen straight away when they get out of the pool. If the sun damages your children’s skin, it can be awful. Make sure you protect your children throughout the day.

Make sure your children dress for the weather

In the same respect, you need to make sure that your children have appropriate clothing for hot weather. Sun hats and appropriate shoes are a must. You need to make sure that your children’s shoulders are never bare, except when they are swimming. Shoulders are always in direct sunlight. That means that if you don’t cover your children’s shoulders, they are likely to burn and even blister in the heat. Adults sometimes forget how sensitive children’s skin is, but you should not make that mistake.

About Marina Villatoro

Marina Kuperman Villatoro CEO of, a travel resource site to inspire families to travel with kids of all ages. Marina has been an expat 20+ years in Central America raising 2 boys in a multicultural, trilingual household. She travels all over the world with her family to give first hand experiences of where to eat, stay and play with kids. Needless to say, it’s never boring! Join Marina on Facebook and Twitter for more unique and boutique family travel!

2 Responses to The Single Parent’s Guide To Traveling With Children: Tips And Hints

  1. This tips are great! Another good idea is to discuss and plan ahead on what to do in the event of a child getting separated/lost. It’s a scary situation, especially in an unfamiliar place! A good backup plan is a must =)
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