Article by Daniel Sherwin with

4 Ways to Prepare for Traveling with the Kids

Traveling with kids is a wonderful way to bond as a family, and research shows that it could also be great for your child’s development. As most parents know, however, traveling with kids can also be a big source of anxiety, threatening to cancel out the relaxation you wanted from the trip in the first place. Taking a few steps to prepare yourself is the best way to get a stress-free getaway, and it doesn’t have to be difficult.

Choose the Right Place to Stay

Think outside the vacation box and avoid a hotel. With more vacation rentals on the market than ever before, opting for a rental can be much easier on a family, especially if you have more than one kiddo. You won’t have to worry about your children disrupting other hotel guests or being cooped up so close together. Plus, a lot of rentals are offered up with families in mind, including proximity to things like the beach or local activities. And if you’re vacationing in the Cape Cod region, the rental options run the gamut thanks to the 500-plus miles of coastline and endless seaside adventures. You’re sure to find something that’s a great fit for your family.

Bring Snacks

Throughout the whole trip, your kid is going to exposed to a variety of junk food temptations. They are also going to be hungry at inconvenient times, like the middle of a five-hour flight or when you’re on an empty stretch of road. Bring a supply of healthy snacks and keep topping it off wherever you can.

This isn’t just for the benefit of the kids, either. Adults tend to eat unhealthy foods when on vacation, and according to experts, packing your own healthy snacks is one of the best ways to combat this. Plus, it could help curb overeating.

Invest in a Travel Crib

If you are traveling with a baby or toddler, consider investing in a travel crib. These are portable, light, and easy to use, and can greatly increase your flexibility when traveling with a young child; instead of relying on hotels or rentals to have an available crib, you can carry your own and stay wherever you like. Even when your accommodations have a crib, these are often bulky and take up most of the room, so a small compact travel crib is a much better option.

Select Some Games and Toys

Your kids are going to be bored, restless, or simply over-excited during portions of the trip, so it’s best to prepare for this. Pack a selection of travel games and toys, but avoid bringing any of their absolute favorites, as it’s very easy to lose something during travel. Flying with a Baby, a blog dedicated to the art of traveling with children, has an extensive guide on the best toys to pack

Load Up Your Tech

Even if you prefer to limit your child’s exposure to screens during their regular routine, you should consider making an exception during travel. Nothing calms a child down like a tablet with a video or a game, especially once they’ve tired of the toys you’ve prepared.

The Guardian offers up a great selection of apps you can download to keep kids of all ages distracted, which cover everything from streaming services to games and even stories. You can also download information about your destination and read it with them get them excited about the trip.

As with many things in life, preparation is everything. Taking some time to think about any issues that may arise and what you can do to mitigate them is easy, and it makes traveling with kids the pleasure that it should be.