Travelling with Children

Having only just returned from a family Holiday to Butlin’s it seems fitting that the Mark Warner Bloggers competition asks for travelling tips for travelling with kids.
I’m in no way an expert however I was a Nanny for 14 years before having the kids and with one family I went on most of their holidays with them, usually in this country as they had a holiday home in Bournemouth, a few times to Wales and other UK destinations and once to Kos. 
It was great fun but it was always hard work.  The first few times I travelled with the family the children were very small and it was my job to act as in car entertainment for them.
Now one thing I soon discovered was that if sitting in the back of the car reading to the kids and playing with them – I would always get travel sick, I had to remember to wear travel sickness bands on my wrists and take my anti-sickness tablets.
Now after a few of these family trips I learnt what works well in helping to amuse the children.
  • Snacks and drinks – little packs of raisins, sandwiches etc – things which aren’t too messy and can be eaten in the car (avoid chocolate!)
  • Colouring books and crayons – these can keep children amused for ages (and adults too!), if they have a favourite TV show why not print of some colouring pages from the internet
  • New books – now this is obviously age dependant however why not take a look at the selection in poundland or charity shops? You can discover some lovely books which your children haven’t read before or even library books but do remember to return them
  • Audio books – you can borrow these from the library and listen to them in the car as a family or listen on personal headsets
  • I spy – a classic for all ages
  • Travel Bingo – this can be used with children of all ages – you just adjust the difficulty levels.  Draw pictures on a piece of paper, each child has different images on their paper and the winner is the first to tick off all the images first.  I find having a small bag of sweets as a prize helps to keep the children interested
  • New toys (or old ones which haven’t been played with for a while), wrap these up in wrapping paper and offer the children a new toy to unwrap and play with every half an hour or so.  These can be anything such as a doll, car, toy phone – anything which can be played with in a seat.

Of course there are always portable DVD players, tablets and games consoles which are great for amusement however I prefer to limit the amount of time these are relied upon.

I also try to plan journeys around nap times so the children can sleep in the car, I take blankets and make sure they have pillows or have a teddy/comforter to cuddle.

Happily snoozing with his dummy and teddy

How do you plan for long journeys with children?

This is my entry into the first Mark Warner blogger challenge.



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