Traveling with Children

Traveling with Children

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  1. Traveling with children as a single parent can be hectic but also fun. There are a few important things to remember that will help make your travels much easier and more fun for everyone.


    Make certain that all important paperwork is up to date: passports, drivers licenses, car registration.  Carry passports, medical cards, any documents that may be needed. Keep all important documents and items in the parent’s baggage. You should also know which emergency services or hospitals accept your medical insurance at the final destination. Start packing well in advance to be certain that you have everything.  Let the older children help by being responsible for their own baggage and allow them to help you as much as possible. Keep count of all baggage frequently.  If the children carry toys or books they should carry a minimum.  Carry toys and books that can be repacked quickly.  For small items, quart sized bags that can be tucked away quickly will be more efficient.  Now that there are backpacks on wheels, the children carrying their own things will make traveling much easier.  Make certain that your cell phone has an excellent charge before you start traveling and keep it charged.

    Car Travel

    Make certain that there are enough car seats for children who are required to use them.  This is where toys, books and maybe movies come in handy to help keep the children busy.  If the trip is longer than four hours, it would be easier for you to fly or take the train.  Make certain that snacks are available. Use a freeway, or roads that have lots of gas and bathroom stops along the way. Keep the gas tank filled at each stop.

    Air Travel

    Make sure to arrive early enough so that long lines and unexpected delays can be kept to a minimum. Ask which seating area is best very young children.  Ask if you can use a car seat for a young child if needed.  Make certain that all seats are together when reservations are made.  This will make the flight much easier and family oriented.  If the flight is long, taking a few extra snacks along may be a good idea. You should know the rates for carried on luggage before each trip.  Use a baggage cart if needed.

    Train Travel

    Seats with tables are very convenient.  Taking breaks on the long stops to stretch your legs will help you and the children get more exercise.  Only take breaks outside the train if there is enough time allowed.

    If your train has an observation car, make sure to visit it. This is a wonderful experience for the entire family.  Some trains also show films that are family friendly.  If you don’t have much luggage, you can keep it with you at your seat or in the overhead section for luggage.  Large baggage has to be kept on the lower level. Trains also have electric outlets so that you can recharge your cell phone. According to, if the trip is longer than six hours, consider traveling at night and booking a sleeper car, most children really enjoy sleeping in the bunks.  It is more expensive to book sleepers, but it is worth it for a long trip.


    Children under two years and not occupying a seat are usually free on most trains when riding in a parent’s lap. Check with the rail company.  If booking a seat, consider taking a car seat for children under two years of age.

    Once organized, allowing the children to share the responsibility, using the restroom before each trip and allowing time for delays, have a great trip.



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