Traveling as a family with kids in tow can be a terrifying prospect for most people as they dread the tears, the tantrums, stressful dinners and daily routines that go out the window when you go on a family trip. But family travel is one of the most eye-opening adventures you can enjoy as a family and shouldn’t be avoided just because you dread a few small hiccups that come with it. All you need is a bit of planning and you’re good to go. You needn’t listen to or take advice from people about family travel when they haven’t even been on a trip. Here is a list of some popular family travel myths debunked to help you understand why family travel is an integral part of life.
1. Long trips aren’t sensible
This is one of those family travel myths that just isn’t true. While most kids do get whiny in the car (or the airplane) and you are constantly bombarded with the “Are we there yet?” routine, it isn’t essentially a bad thing to take your kids on a long-term journey. All you really need to do is figure out the best way to keep them engaged. Here are a few things you can do: Take night flight so that they’ll sleep through the journey. Get tabs or laptops to keep older kids engaged with games or even educational videos. Talk about the trip and the fun things you are about to do together. Basically, just distract them from thinking about the journey.
2. Kids don’t deal well with change at all
Kids are used to a routine - getting up at a certain time, meals on time, and then going back to sleep at a certain time as well. But it’s one of the worst family travel myths that kids don’t deal well with change. Kids are surprisingly adaptable. They are young and impressionable, and if you make something to be a big deal then that’s how they’ll treat it as well. This is one of the family travel myths that need to be debunked to show that kids are actually very open to adjusting and if handled perfectly, will learn a lot from the trip.
3. They’ll fall sick inevitably
Kids fall sick. A lot. Period. But that they will inevitably fall sick is one among the family travel myths that must be debunked. No matter the destination, you need to make sure your kids have had their vaccinations and all other necessary shots prior to leaving for the trip. Always carry a medical emergency kit along. If they do happen to fall sick while on the road, remember that there are doctors all over the world and they will be there at your intended travel destination as well.
4. Your luggage will be overflowing and too heavy
Absolutely untrue! This is one of those family travel myths that have been exaggerated beyond tolerance. Yes, when you travel with kids you need to pack their stuff as well. But the trick here is to pack smart. If it’s toddlers, carry nappies and other important stuff just enough for the journey as you can always stock up on them later. Older kids make it easier as they can carry their own stuff (but make sure it isn’t heavy). When picking bags, a wise choice would be backpacks as opposed to suitcases as this way you will have your hands free.
5. The kids will constantly have meltdowns
Don’t they have those at home as well? It’s another one of those family travel myths that your kids will constantly have meltdowns. It’s natural for kids to be moody and cranky sometimes. They’re kids, it’s part of what they do! You just need to avoid pushing the buttons that drive them over the edge to avoid meltdowns. Mostly it’s about food and sleep. So all you need to do is make sure they get enough sleep, are well hydrated, and don’t let them get too hungry. You will be able to avoid maximum meltdowns this way.
6. They won’t even remember the trip
While this may be true if you’re traveling with infants or toddlers, this is among the family travel myths to be debunked if your kids are older. And by older we don’t just mean 15 or 18-year olds; kids as young as 4 have been known to recall small but significant things from a trip years later. Kids are very sharp and if you let travel be their teacher, you will be surprised at how amazingly they catch on. This is why it is one of the biggest family travel myths that kids won’t remember the trip. They may not talk about it too often but they will remember the fun you had and the memories you made together.
So keep the above family travel myths in mind when you next plan a trip and remind yourself that they are all just myths. Let there be no hesitation in booking cheap flights and taking that much looked-forward-to family trip.