All information for parents travelling with children
At WioWiKi, we are committed to caring for children’s needs. Here some advice we have compiled for you to make travelling with children an easy and pleasurable experience.
1. Plan in advance
Plan your trip according to your child’s needs. If you are travelling far, short stopovers are better. Arriving early at the airport takes the stress out of the journey. Plus, you will have time for unexpected things like a last-minute diaper change.
2. Specify your requirements
If your child is too young, reserve a bassinet. If he’s allergic to some food, better take yours. If he’s bottle fed, it is better to take enough milk powder in case of flight delays.
3. Use your frequent-flyer membership
If you’re a member of an airline’s frequent-flyer club, you are almost sure to be entitled to use a separate departure lounge that includes better seating facilities, drinks, snacks and better space, things that are very welcome when travelling with children.
4. Do your check in online
As soon as you get your ticket, some airlines notify that you can check in online a few days prior to your departure. This procedure allows you book preferred seats and avoid queuing. On reaching the airport, you will simply have to show your ID and leave your luggage in a separate queue.
5. Keep children warm
Children should be dressed comfortably for the weather at your destination. But airports and planes have air-conditioning and your child would require warm clothes. Avoid shoes with metallic stuff or those difficult to remove at security checks.
6. Carry enough diapers and a change
As it is best to avoid dehydration, toddlers would require more nappies than usual. Wet nappies can add to travel discomfort and make your child more irritable. Also bring extra clothing for your child if he messes it up. Same thing applies to you: carry at least a spare T-shirt if your child regurgitates on your shoulder.
7. Electronic toys
If you prefer to carry them instead of cumbersome toys in your hand luggage, make sure to charge these toys. Take the chargers with you. Most airports have sockets to recharge them, thanks to mobile phones. Be sure o keep the volume down so that they do not disturb your neighbouring passengers. Also, ask for children activity kits on planes.
8. Use the baby changing rooms
All airports have them. They are clean, spacious and allow your infant to be changed comfortably.
During travel, children tend to get ill very quickly. Take care to pack a few items in their hand luggage: basic medicine, wipes, plasters, anti-mosquito spray, thermometer, etc.
10. Place tags on their bags
Children may forget or lose their bags at different places. To avoid stress, place tags on their bags with your telephone number.
11. At transit points, keep them busy
If you want your child to sleep during the flight, you need to ensure that he is kept busy at transit points. Games, trips to duty-free stores or activities like pushing the buggy, taking photographs, filling their scrapbook, counting planes or gates, writing postcards, counting foreign currency, etc. can help them remain awake.
12. Double check their passports and immigration requirements
If your child is above a certain age, he might require a separate passport. Double check this detail especially if you are travelling to a country where you need to get a visa to enter.
Keep plenty at easy reach. Wherever you go, use them to avoid unnecessary infection.
14. Involve older children in your planning
Your teenager is not anymore the little darling who followed you everywhere without asking any question. Involve him in the planning of the holiday and inform him or her about the duration of the flight, the transits, etc. Not doing this may result in a lot of sulking that you may want to avoid.
15. Get your doctor’s advice
Check with your doctor if you are travelling to a distant foreign land. Doctors can prescribe medicines in case of need. If any of your children has a specific medical condition, ask for help to locate a local doctor in your destination who can properly handle the condition in case of need. If you’re travelling to a country in which malaria is prevalent (check the list of affected countries at who.int/ith/en) and take a specialist’s advice on which antimalarial medication can be best for the whole family. Remember, mosquito bites are best avoided by taking simple precautions like applying insect repellent when daylight starts to fade and wearing long clothes. It is also better to check if your accommodation provides you with mosquito nets impregnated with insecticide. Also carry a soothing cream to help children cope with bites that cause itching.
16. Beat motion sickness
Motion sickness can be a pain. Nothing can be more upsetting than your kid throwing up as soon as the plane takes off. The best way to avoid it is to eat a light meal before boarding, selecting seating just over the wings for maximum stability and taking antihistamines to reduce motion sickness. A common trick that works with some children is to have them wear sunglasses during the flight. The idea behind this is to reduce their field of vision and thus reduce vision-induced nausea.
17. Carry enough items on board
The tightening of regulations regarding what you can carry as hand luggage is a nightmare to parents travelling with babies and very young children. What quantity baby foods, drinks and nappy cream you are allowed to carry can become a daunting question. Check with your travel agent, airline or airport in advance. Splitting items into smaller quantities can be a good option.
18. Beat take-off and landing discomfort
To prevent discomfort induced by rapid ascension and descent of the plane, you can alternatively massage your child’s ears from behind, allow them to suck on a candy, have them gently drink a glass of juice, make them chew gum or simply make them yawn.
19. Stay in family-oriented hotels
Look for family-oriented hotels that offer special amenities, spacious rooms, activities and calm. In our accommodation section, we have quite a few of them that can meet your requirements. Avoid busy and crowded hotels and beach houses.
20. If you are in trouble, don’t panic
Whatever be the nature of a problem, having children with you can be, in most cases, a plus. People tend to readily offer help if you are in a difficult situation.