Summer retreats: How to have a great holiday with children

Planning a vacation with kids? Here are some easy tips for a stress-free break

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Allow children to explore new things during holidays

Reminisce the joys of travelling with children — either your own or others? Oh boy! Pulling off a great family vacation requires patience, planning and lots of effort. To make your vacations memorable ones and to let you know all about from what to pack to how to get there, here are some tried-and-tested tips.

1. Take it easy: You might be happy about rushing from site A to B to make the most of your vacation bucket list but for kids the time in between is extra time. Children love to explore and don’t care much about the time pressures of travel. Needless to say you need to factor in tantrums, toilet-stops, play pen time and of course, some quick-bite breaks.

2. Carry new toys and books: What hasn’t been seen and handled earlier will keep them curious for longer than expected. Be it story books, noiseless toys or even puzzles and mind-games, stock up on a few things that you can use as a secret weapon when the need arises. But mind you, pulling them out too soon will leave you with no recourse. So judge its need well to last you your vacation.

3. Stick to just one carry-on bag: Once you are with toddlers, you no longer read a book or need your own snacks. You are much better off stacking your carry-on with their essentials than worrying about storing music on your iPad. Of course, if your children are old enough, let them carry a carry-on with contents of their own choice loaded for measure.

4. Be prepared with some tricks and games: No one wants a delayed flight or, even worse, a cancelled one. To keep those curious minds busy in such times, prep yourself with some magic tricks or brain games involving counting, general knowledge and even motor skills.

5. Break rules: You have always restricted their screen time when at home. But remember, it’s vacation time. Let them watch a little extra TV or download new games on their tablets if it means you enjoying some well deserved me-time. After all, it’s your vacation too!

6. Don’t overpack: No matter which place you are vacationing in, you will always find what you need. It may not be the same brand but you’ll manage unless you are absolutely finicky about its country of origin and make. When it comes to packing, your prime worry should be medicines and absolute must-haves.

7. Research: Do your homework about your vacation destination, kid-friendly restaurants, etc. It is worth your time exploring it all online. And if an incident still arises regardless of all the planning, tuck into some comfort food and relax.

— The writer is CEO and Co-founder of HolidayMe.com

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