Are we there yet? How often do we hear that when travelling? Preparation
is key. Jumping in the car and setting
off as you did before the family came along will no longer work! Be realistic about what you can cover with
children in the party and plan for a slower pace of travel with more frequent
Make ‘getting there’ part of the holiday. By involving your children in the
preparations, they will feel the journey is worthwhile to get to the next stage
of the holiday. If your child hasn’t any
other concept of holiday except the destination, it’s no surprise that the
journey is of less importance to them. Break down the
journey into bits so that the excitement and enjoyment will be extended.
Use stops in the journey be it by car or by plane to break the pace. Get out of the car and throw a ball about or
walk around the airport lounge looking at the people and place and discussing
what they see and hear. An airport has
an amazing number of things going on!
Many parents ensure their children have their own carry bag with a few
things they want with them such as a favourite toy, but leave room for a few
surprise treats, wrapped up to maintain the surprise. For younger children try card games like Go Fish or themed snap cards. Use them at intervals
throughout the journey and don’t forget the return journey so hold some back for
Entertainment on the move doesn’t have to be complicated. For babies something small and simple, even a
few building blocks to put together and take apart again will entertain and can
be reused later in the trip. Toddlers love picture books, pop-up books, and reusable
sticker books that are not expensive and can be reused.
Although we live in an age of electronic games which are great for
travelling, school age kids can still have fun with old-fashioned favourites
such as Dot to Dots, Noughts and Crosses, and simple word games. In cars games that involve everyone like I-Spy,
game (decide before you go on a few things to spot such as a green lorry, white
building, blue writing) and Hangman where everyone in the party takes turns to
say a letter and guess the word. And car
registration plates have always provided entertainment making up words and
silly sentences with the letters.
To remember the holiday encourage children to take photographs, pick up
postcards, keep tickets and keep a diary with how they felt and the emotions of
the day. A scrapbook of the holiday
could also be used for show and tell at school.
So for calm holiday travel, do some thinking and
preparation before you go, get the kids involved on the way and have games
ready to use when needed. Simple!