Travel With Your Family Overseas

By Bree James (PakMag)

A lot of families are hesitant to take their kids overseas when they are young. I will admit, I was like that too, but I put my hesitation down to three main reasons: fear that my kids won’t remember the trip; the degree of difficulty travelling with littlies (sleep, things to do, travel plans, food options are all trickier with kids); and the cost of travel.

But after some deep thinking, I changed my view and I am so pleased I did. And here’s why you should too:

Memories are made, even if they are difficult to remember

Yes. Your kids may not remember the trip. But that is what photos are for. You, as a parent will remember the trip, and you will have so many fond memories of taking them on adventures.

My boys still reminisce about trips from when they were one year old. I am not sure if they remember – I highly doubt they do – but they sure love hearing the stories and seeing the pictures.

That sense of knowing they have been somewhere special shines in their eyes and they often surprise me with connecting things we see today like snow on TV, to a time when they were two and saw it for the first and only time.

The feelings of accomplishment as a parent to have taken your children somewhere you may or may not have travelled as a child is also a great feeling.

Routines can be broken

Going on any holiday with little kids is hard whether it is an hour away, or fifteen. Holidaying with kids is mostly the same life at home but in a different location and without the comforts of home.

You need to set some ground rules, and really pick your battles as to what you will tolerate and will not tolerate. My main mantra is “don’t sweat the small stuff’ while you are away.

Do your best and remain calm in stressful situations – you will laugh about them later. There are very challenging times.

Childhood is fleeting

Things like Disneyland lose their magic to older kids, so it is fantastic to take them when they are little and are so amazed and star struck to meet Micky Mouse or their favourite character. Priceless.

Kids often stay, play and eat FREE

The cost to travel with kids can actually be a lot cheaper. Airfares are free for under two year olds. Some flights are discounted for children, accommodation can be cheaper – some places kids stay and eat free, and feeding a 4 year old is much cheaper than feeding a fourteen year old. A lot of tourism attractions are free for under six year olds. The cost of travelling overseas is nowhere what it used to be when we were growing up.

Sure, holidays are expensive. But the investment in our memories as a family have been worth the sacrifices at home to save to make it happen.

Great places for family holidays

Having kids will not stop me from travelling and I hope it doesn’t stop you. My boys have been on six overseas holidays in six years. It is my mission to ensure they see as much of the world, and learn the many things that travel teaches us.

You can do it. Give it a try. And you will be so happy that you did.

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