When you think of a family holiday with kids, you may be filled with dread, nerves, anxiety and maybe just a slight bit of excitement (if you’re lucky).
It’s certainly no easy feat embarking on a family holiday with a plethora of children in tow but if done right, your family holiday can prove to be a success for everyone involved. My latest family holiday to Morzine was largely a success, albeit with a few tantrums here and there and I wanted to share with you guys how you can make travelling with children an enjoyable experience too.
Here’s my best tips on how to survive a family holiday with kids.
Before Morzine, I hadn’t been on holiday with my whole family since 2015 when we spent Christmas at Center Parcs. It was obviously awesome and magical and Christmassy but three young kids (plus me as a moody teenager) can’t have been easy for my parents. So when we decided to go to Morzine this summer, I was a tad apprehensive as to how it might go.
Thankfully, it was pretty wonderful and although there were a number of arguments and disagreements, I think the whole holiday could be classed as a success. So here’s what you need to know on how to survive a family holiday with kids.
Bring entertainment devices
Obviously you don’t want your kids glued to their iPads for the duration of the holiday but they can be an absolute godsend on long plane, train and car journeys. My little brother has a kid-friendly Kindle that he watches movies and YouTube on and it keeps him entertained for hours on end. It’s not exactly the most ideal form of distraction but it really does work a treat and it’s better than listening to them ask “are we there yet” 15 times an hour.
Stock up on snacks
If you’re embarking on a lengthy road trip (and you’re anything like my dad) then you probably just want to reach your destination as soon as possible with minimal stops. Therefore it’s imperative to be fully stocked up on snacks for both the adults and kids so no one gets hangry and starts to cause a fuss. Naturally, healthy snacks would be preferable, but you’re on holiday, so crack open the Pringles and Haribo and go wild!
Invent new family games
OK so we definitely didn’t invent it but when my brother and I were younger and would go on road trips that involved lots of hills we’d play a game where we’d close our eyes from the bottom until we thought we’d reached the top and whoever opened their eyes at the right time, won. It sounds boring AF now, but when you’re younger those kind of ‘games’ can keep you entertained for hours. Play a family game of eye spy or bring a travel size version of Connect 4 (we played this on the plane flying out) and the kids are sure to be kept occupied for at least a few minutes.
Don’t strive for perfection and ignore everyone else
Sure, you may get a few stares in that quintessential French restaurant as your baby screams the roof down but chances are you’re never going to see any of those people again and if they can’t accept that babies cry, they can politely piss off. You can often find yourself in embarrassing and sticky situation when travelling with children, but that’s all part of the fun and if you receive a number of negative stares and comments, then those people probably haven’t travelled with young kids, and probably wouldn’t be able to cope anyway. Sharing the world with your kids is an amazing experience and you’ll be so thankful that you created those memories when they’re older; you’ll (probably) forget about that time your child wiped out an entire shelf of alcohol at Duty Free…
Choose your accommodation wisely
There are so many child-friendly resorts all over the world that are more than happy to host families with young children. Thankfully our hotel in Morzine was more than accommodating for both children and adults so it was the perfect place to set up camp without feeling like we were intruding on any couples-only holidays. Careful consideration of your holiday and accommodation can prove to be vital to the success of your family as a safe and comfortable environment that’s ideal for kids really will make the world of difference.
Give yourself plenty of time
If you’re flying with young kids then there’s probably a million and one things you need to remember to do and bring with you (as well as remembering to bring your child). Give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport so you’re not in a mad rush through security and baggage check with your kids in tow. There’s nothing more stressful than having to dash through the airport so you don’t miss your plane, never mind with a trail of kids behind you!
This is definitely easier said than done when the kids are driving you up the wall and you’re questioning why on Earth you’d bring all these little brats on holiday, but it’s so important to try and remain calm, composed and patient. Yes, they can be incredibly frustrating but at the end of the day, they’re kids. Try and gain a little perspective and remain as patient as you can when everyone’s arguing and kicking off about the four hour car journey or delayed flight.
Enjoy the family time together
The most important thing to remember when surviving a family holiday with kids is to have fun. Our family holiday to Morzine was probably the last proper holiday I’ll have with my parents and younger siblings for a long time so it was really important to me to cherish it as much as possible. Family time really is one of the most amazing and special things in the whole world and when you get the chance to create some incredible memories together on holiday, that’s something that really should be appreciated.
What are your best tips on how to survive a family holiday with kids? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @imjustagirl_16.