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Going on Holidays with Toddlers -- What You Need to Know

Children are a joy and a struggle at any age-- often at the same time-- but the toddler years seem to present a set of very specific challenges. You certainly know your child much better than we do, but the average toddler is often fidgety, impatient, fussy, and prone to the occasional outburst. These behaviours-- along with the joy that toddlers bring-- often come out in concentrated form when you take them with you on holiday. Traveling with your toddler can be a wonderful and occasionally challenging experience. Here are a few things you need to know about holidays with your toddler.

Keeping the Peace on The Airplane

One of the toughest phases of your toddler holiday will be on the plane. Here are a few tried and true tips for keeping the peace while you're in the air:
  • Insofar as you can, schedule your flights around your toddler's nap times.
  • Try to make sure your toddler is tired when they get on the plane.
  • Nonstop flights are preferable, but if you can't manage one, layovers are for wiggling around, not sleeping.
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  • Expect a certain amount of fuss and don't overreact when your child misbehaves.
  • If other passengers seem irritated with your child's behaviours, don't take it personally.
Lastly, if your toddler starts yelling or screaming on the plane for some reason, handle it (and every other disciplinary action) the same way you would in any other setting. Patience and a calm request for the ‘indoor voice’ are as effective on an airplane as they are at home.

Packing for Maximum Toddler Success

As you probably already learned while your toddler was an infant, good preparation is the key to every successful parenting enterprise. Nowhere is this truer than when you take a toddler on holiday, when proper packing can turn a potential disaster into an inconvenience. Neither you nor your child was born yesterday, so you likely already know to pack essentials like clothing, diapers, toys, and that sort of thing. But as experienced toddler parents have learned (often the hard way), there are a few extra things to bring along that you might not have considered. Here’s a quick list of these frequently forgotten necessities:
  • Baby blankets for warmth, shade, and security
  • Plastic bags for soiled items
  • Plenty of toys and books, including your child's favorite stuffed animal
  • A fully charged computer tablet with entertaining videos already downloaded
  • Extra device chargers and a supplemental battery pack
  • Sunglasses, sun hat, and sunscreen
  • Snacks, sippy cups, and other baby dishes/cutlery

Control What You Can Control and Your Toddler Will Follow

Oddly enough, much of the success of your holiday will have little, if anything, to do with your toddler and their behavior. As you well know, children at this age are predictably unpredictable. When it comes to taking your toddler on holiday, you might not know the exact details of what's going to happen, but you DO know that they're going to fidget, fuss, throw the occasional tantrum etc. You also know they'll be an absolute delight much of the time, so you accept the good with the bad and plan accordingly. If you control what's it's possible to control about the rest of your holiday, then you'll manage things much better when your toddler does what toddlers inevitably do. While this means something different for every family, here are a few things that will help you absorb your toddler's occasional frustrating behavior:
  • Get enough rest and take time for yourself.
  • Have backup plans for each phase of your trip.
  • Divide responsibility for the toddler's care and supervision between family members.
  • Be sure to pack adequately for yourself as well as your toddler.
The specifics depend on your situation, but the bottom line goes something like this: happy parents equals happy toddler, at least for the most part. Control what you can control while remaining flexible, and the rest will fall into place.

ACE-FX is Always There in the Background

This concludes our discussion of going on holiday with your toddler. Whether you follow our instructions to the letter or simply use them as guidelines, we do hope they prove useful during your trip. In the end, however, we know that you and your wiggly darling will manage to spend a wonderful holiday together somehow. Here at ACE-FX, we're just happy to be part of your family's holiday experience. We're here to serve all of your family's financial travel needs. Whether you need to transfer money online, make an international payment, or purchase a prepaid travel card, we take great joy in protecting your interests and letting you focus on what truly matters.

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