Right now festive holiday plans are in full swing. And if you have kids - you know it involves quite a lot of planning, and some well needed travel or holiday hacks to have a comfortable and relaxing trip as much as possible.
Whether it be a beach or snow holiday, we decided to speak to some recent clients who travelled with their little ones and gave us their best travel hacks when on holidays as a family. Here's the top 5 tips we picked up from mothers in the know...
1. Free food
If you haven't booked a resort or hotel yet, it pays to find a property that offers free full board for kids. A client who stayed in a resort in Fiji recently told us she learnt the lesson the hard way, and had 5 days of paying for food and drink for 2 children which quickly added up. The second stop on their holiday was another resort where kids under 12 were accommodated for all food and activities for free, and she estimated this saved them between $500 - $750 for 5 days. "Not only does it save you financially, but just the stress that comes with having to worry about the bill your building up over the course of your stay, it's an added stress you don't need to worry about by being a little more savvy about where you stay"
2. Sleep well
Travelling with a baby or toddler already means a lot more extra luggage (bottles, nappies, the list goes on) so if you can save yourself the need to travel with your own portacot - then that's a bonus right? I personally travelled recently and knew I'd have my hands full with the rest of our luggage (doesn't help when your husband travels with surfboards!) so I reached out to the resort we were travelling to beforehand, and asked for them to send me a photo of the in room portacots they could provide. It looked similar to the one I already owned, so to make my little one feel 'at home' I just packed a woolen underlay (for softness and comfort) and her own bedding, and this worked a treat.
3. Plastic bags
Seems simple, but packing some small snack plastic bags can not only be a cost saver, but a life saver to have snacks readily available for the kids. A buffet breakfast is a common holiday treat, but getting the value for little ones is no doubt questionable come breakfast time. A great hack we were told about was to pack some snack plastic lock bags - and pack some of the kids favourite nibbles from breakfast so you have this with you throughout the day. Particularly if you've travelled somewhere overseas or long haul and are far away from easily being able to purchase food throughout the day, this is a small but simple travel hack perfect for hungry little ones!
4. Check water
I know in my hometown, water is safe to drink from the tap, but on holidays this isn't always the case. On our recent family holiday we learnt the hard way - we didn't read about the water quality before travelling, and quickly realised how lucrative buying water at the hotel really was! Particularly when you're travelling with babies and toddlers, water consumption is not just for drinking - but needed constantly for washing eating utensils and bottles, formula feeding and a myriad of other cleaning needs! Whilst we asked for extra 'free' water from the hotel since we were travelling with a baby, the generous '1 extra bottle' a day didn't quite cut it, and a week later we had spent a LOT on water for our trip. Particularly on remote island holidays, we've heard from families visiting Fiji, Maldives, and islands off Indonesia - water can be purchased for a quarter of the price at the airport or even boat dock - so do your research and stock up before you leave for the island.
5. Bandaid hack
Not only are band aids probably a safe bet to travel with little ones regardless, but a friend of mine recently travelled with her 2 and 4 yr old to Bali and was surprised with how many open power sockets there were in hotels they stayed in. When you travel its unavoidable to spend time in smaller hotel rooms (unlike the luxury of space we have at home) so she used a pack of band aids to cover up the electrical sockets in each of the rooms so they were not exposed to little fingers. So simple, but a genius travel hack for little ones.
As all parents know, travelling with little ones doesn't have to complicate travel plans if you plan ahead - but planning and being prepared is absolutely the key.
And of course if your holiday plans are sorted, and you have your next family memories ready to embark on - we can absolutely help capture them in over 90 cities around the world. Travelshoot makes family memories truly memorable.