Do you have plans to travel to Europe with the whole family? Travelling with kids in Europe may take some intricate planning and scheduling, but being prepared will make your vacation smoother.
Here are 10 tips for travelling with kids in Europe.
10 Tips for Travelling with Kids in Europe
There are some things you just can’t leave home without, but don’t fall into the trap of over-packing. Keep in mind that many places, such as train stations, are not stroller-friendly. If you can avoid it, you might want to leave the stroller at home.
On the other hand, some parents cannot live without their stroller so if that’s the case, it’s completely understandable! Some things are non-negotiable like a high chair and baby carrier. Don’t forget to pack the important stuff.
Speaking of packing, one person should be in charge of packing! Instead of both parents packing and neither knowing where anything is, one person packs. You could also make a list of where everything is: toiletries in the red suitcase, extra diapers in the blue carry-on.
Print your boarding passes at home.
You’ll save quite a bit of time and money if you print your passes before you head to the airport.
Check and double-check your passports.
Worst case scenario would be getting to the airport and realizing there’s an issue with one of your passports! Make sure your passport will be valid for six months after your trip.
Also, if you’re leaving the country with your children but without your spouse, make sure to have a letter of consent with you.
Leave a copy of travel documents and itinerary with a family member; scan copies and email them to yourself as well.
Consider renting a house or apartment.
This depends on area and budget, but sometimes you can find a house rental for much less than a hotel would cost you. This is especially true when you are staying for longer periods of time. Check out vacation rental websites like Airbnb or HomeAway before booking hotels.
Sleep upon arrival.
If you’re making a long flight to Europe, chances are you’re going to be jet-lagged. You don’t want to mess their sleep schedule up too much, but everyone is probably going to need a nice long nap before any exploring takes place.
Allow enough time to visit each country.
If you’re visiting more than one country, allow enough time to fully enjoy each country before moving onto the next. If you have a few weeks, a few countries will be plenty. Don’t rush things! You’ll end up with crabby kids (and parents), and nobody wants that.
On that same note, allow more time than you expect to need. There’s always something that comes up while traveling, especially with kiddos! So instead of being stressed out, make sure you’re allowing some “oops” time in between stops.
Pack a lunch.
Food and drinks can be a huge expense while traveling, so hit the market and pack a lunch when possible. This goes for snacks, too! Find a grocery store and stock up on breakfast food items, water, drinks, fruit and other snacks, leaving your spending for lunch or dinner.
Book a tour. Or two!
Hop On Hop Off Tours are a great way to see the cities without having to walk miles and miles. Especially with little ones in tow, exploring on foot may not be feasible. If your children are older, consider renting bicycles to tour the city or countryside.
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of everything, including posting pictures of your trip. Take time each evening to upload photos and send them to your email, or post to social media, but during the day make sure you’re present. There’s nothing worse than regretting how you spend your time while on vacation.
While traveling with kids in Europe, something always goes wrong. It is bound to happen, but how you react to the situation is what will determine the rest of your vacation!