When you become a parent, leaving the house can be a task in itself, let alone gathering your brood and taking them on holiday. The good news is, with many travel companies now offering luxury family hotels, jetting off somewhere exotic has never been so easy. So, if you’re looking to get away with the kids here’s the ultimate guide to holidaying with youngsters.
Choose the right accommodation
Whether you fancy a week away in Spain or a fortnight in Thailand, it’s important to choose accommodation that meets the wants, needs and demands of your family. If you have a new born baby or toddler, for instance, you might need a hotel/resort that provides Moses baskets or travel cots to save you lugging bulky equipment from A to B. Similarly, if your baby is bottle-fed, you might prefer self-catered accommodation or somewhere with a mini kitchenette with a kettle, microwave, stove and other equipment that’ll enable you to prepare milk easily.
Of course, safety is also key, so try to book a room on the ground floor as this will reduce the risk of your children falling from a height. If no ground-floor rooms are available in your preferred hotel, make sure the room either doesn’t have a balcony or (if it does) that it’s well-protected with child-safe barrier. Remember, small children can slip through safety bars even if they are placed close together so never let them out of your sight.
Upon arrival, you should also tie up any loose blind strings to make sure they’re not a choking hazard and cover all open sockets. You should also check for fire and carbon monoxide alarms as if they are nowhere to be found, your lives could be at risk. This might sound a bit extreme, but children have died as a result of carbon monoxide leaks in holiday accommodation so never take anything for granted and always keep safe on holiday.
Look for plenty of entertainment
As well as finding the right room, you should also look for a resort with plenty of family-friendly entertainment. While many hotels offer a range of facilities that kids are sure to love including swimming pools, tennis courts, parks and soft play areas, others go the extra mile by running a kid’s club, putting on entertainment throughout the day and in the evenings and offering a babysitting/crèche service for parents who simply want a relaxing child-free meal out.
What’s more, don’t forget to check out what there is to do in the local area. Sure, you might come across the perfect five-star hotel that has everything you require, but if it’s located in the middle of nowhere you might find exploring a little hard – especially if you have to travel long distances with frustrated kids just to have dinner out at a restaurant.
As a parent, not only do you have to pack for yourself, you’ll have to pack for your kids too. The trick is to get a rough idea of what the weather will be like before putting together outfits for each child and laying everything out on the bed to make sure you have enough t-shirts, shorts and trousers for your trip – and don’t leave everything to the last minute. Make a note of what you need, be it swimsuits, sunhats, and jelly shoes and pick up bargains as you go. What’s more, if you have a tiny baby and you’re worried what they might need on the flight, fear not. There are checklists available to give you a helping hand and as long as you fill your baby bag with spare clothes, plenty of snacks and various toys, you should be fine.
Travelling with children can seem daunting, but with plenty of preparation and planning everything should run smoothly – just don’t leave anything to chance.