Theme park tips
Disneyland tips for little ones
Family friendly cruising
Dining out with your toddler
Carseats on the plane
Keeping the kids occupied en route
Easing ear pressure and keeping kids comfortable on the plane
Money Saving Tip:
To ease the sticker shock on your credit card bill, try buying gift cards to your favorite restaurants and stores before you go. You can get these at Target, Costco, or other local stores (or even Groupon) throughout the year before your trip. Check to make sure they don’t expire before your trip, though.
Another option is to create a family vacation jar. Everyone puts their loose change or small bills in the jar at the end of each week and when it’s time to go, use the money to buy items for the group… a trolley ride, ice cream at the beach, or Disney tickets. If it’s a clear jar, it’s fun to watch it fill up with money and gets everyone excited about the trip!
Sign up for our email list and those of other travel sites to get a jump start on exclusive deals. Many travel websites (like this one) not only find (and share to their email lists) great travel deals from around the web, but also get exclusive offers from hotels, attractions, restaurants, and even airlines, that they share only with their email subscribers. (To join our list, sign up in the sidebar to the right or at the bottom of this post.)
Planning Tips: As soon as you know where and when you’re going you can start planning. Try starting any big changes (like potty-training or new nap routines) a couple months before you go. Decide one major thing at your destination where you’ll be spending the most time (the beach, theme park, etc.) so you can get a hotel as close to there as reasonable.
A few items that pack well and come in handy are:
– a stroller umbrella (we use a Radio Flyer Umbrella Accessory for ours and it works great)
– bug repellent wipes (sprays can be messy if they leak in your luggage)
– water shoes (or non-skid sandals that can get wet)
– sun hat
– spray fan / water misting fan – – (you can get these at drugstores for under or about $10)
– small polar fleece blanket (lightweight but doesn’t breathe, so it holds body heat well)
– cotton sarong (can be a baby carrier, sun shade, beach blanket, shoulder shawl, etc.) (also lightweight but it does breathe, so it can help keep you cool)
– comfortable walking shoes (break these in at least a few weeks before, if possible)
– a backback (I love my Jansport backpack… it was hard to give up designer totes, but I’m very happy I did.)
Get one with lots of compartments, and a laptop pocket (for diapers when not holding a laptop), bag can also be a booster seat in a pinch, and is the perfect hands-free carry-on bag.
Hotel: Think about whether or not you need a kitchen. Many hotels can offer you a mini-fridge or even a microwave if you ask far enough in advance. If you do need a kitchen, many hotel chains geared toward extended-stay business travelers have gotten good at accomodating families. Also, home or condo rentals or time-share options can be affordable.
What can you bring on the plane?
Check the TSA guidelines to be sure.