Whether you’re an experienced traveller or just starting out on your first solo expedition, it’s hard to argue against the fact that travelling is extremely enjoyable, and very addictive. It therefore makes sense that those who travelled when they were young would continue this trend into family-hood. Traveling with your family, however, is a very different experience than travelling alone or with a small group. It’s an entirely different dynamic with its own unique considerations to take into account. For that reason why we’ve put together a list of travel tips for families to help your next family vacation, whether it’s to Algarve or Cape Town, go as smoothly as possible.
Be prepared for the unexpected
Travelling is hardly ever a straightforward experience. In fact, if nothing unexpected has ever happened to you while travelling then you must have some otherworldly luck. When you’re travelling with kids, the rate of unexpected setbacks increases somewhat. Whether it’s having to fill the rental car up with petrol, doubling back to the hotel to pick up a forgotten toy, or arriving early at the airport only to realise that you’re flight’s been delayed, unplanned for mishaps happen to everyone. Take these unknowns in your stride, and know that they might happen during your trip.
Know your passenger rights
In reference to the above point, knowing your passenger rights is essential when flying or taking other types of transport. It could be the difference between you and your family sleeping in uncomfortable airport chairs, or taking it easy in a hotel suite while you wait for your next flight. If an airline causes a severe delay or cancels your flight altogether, both you and every member of your family is eligible to receive compensation to make up for the delay. Airlines are quite evasive when it comes to paying this money, however, which is why companies like AirHelp will help you receive compensation regardless of whether the delay was caused by Vueling or British Airways.
Always bring a tablet
If you’re travelling with kids then bringing a fully-charged, fully-stocked tablet is a prerequisite. No one is saying that your kids have to live on the tablet for the duration of the holiday, but having something that can keep your busy children occupied for a couple of minutes when you have to do something important, like sorting out the car rental paperwork, can be invaluable for avoiding tears, drama, and tantrums in the airport terminal.
Rent equipment rather than bring your own
Many families choose to bring their own prams and other equipment when they fly. They have their own reasons for doing it, but if you’re considering doing this because you’re unsure of other options, stop right there. It may be cheaper to rent baby equipment at your destination rather than paying the exorbitant amounts that it costs to fly with your gear. Not only does it make for fewer baggage fees, but it’s one less thing you have to stress about when dragging luggage through an airport.
Take it easy
At the end of the day you’re on holiday to spend time with your family, so take it easy! Mishaps may happen and not everything will go smoothly, but it’s important to not sweat the small stuff and enjoy everything as much as you can.
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