Family Travel Tips for Parents on the Go

We just returned from an exciting trip with Disney World and Disney Cruise Line, and can’t wait to share the incredible things that will soon come to Disney parks! Since this was a work and play trip combined, I remembered a few helpful family travel tips for parents on the go, to help streamline the process of traveling with kids.

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  • If Capable, Have Kids Carry Their Gear

I can’t stress enough how important it is to begin this step early!  Whether you’re heading to the beach or getting on a plane, help teach kids accountability by having them carry their backpacks or push a small carry on suitcase through the airport.  Keep the size and weight manageable and stick to this expectation on every excursion.

  • Pick your Mom (or Dad) Bag Wisely

During my hunt for a reliable bag, I couldn’t believe how many brands decided to omit external pockets designed to hold water bottles. I’ve learned to keep my electronics and expensive camera lenses far away from liquids, and have found a solution in sticking with diaper bags.  All of our favorite bags (find great tips on finding the perfect diaper bag here!) are super stylish and modern and in no way scream baby bag! And best of all, they offer, secure places to store large water bottles, stash away valuables, and even tuck in camera lenses.  We need solid compartments galore with comfort and functionality.  I’ve also often gone for neutral colors so my husband can carry the bag when needed.

  • Print and Color Code Calendars

As much as we try to rely on digital calendars, there is nothing like having a clear and concise calendar in a visible spot to keep the entire family informed. On our recent trip, I was required to be in different places than my husband and kids on most days.  A color-coded calendar allowed the kids and my husband to see exactly what was expected of me, and where they’d find pockets of free time along with scheduled family events.

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  • Clear Compartments are your Friend

When a nine-day trip required two hotel changes and a switch to a cruise line, our packing game left something to be desired.  I did, however, pick up an assortment of clear travel pouches from a local discount store.  Having things visibly organized helped a ton! From medications, make-up, electronic chargers, my daughter’s hair accessories, to sunblock and more – not having to search for things saved time while on vacation.

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  • Plan For the Last Day

The final day of vacation is always a drag as it’s time to pack up, head to the airport and face reality! My husband and I gave each other a look when we passed the exact spot in the Orlando airport where we experienced total family chaos just nine months prior, as we tried to rearrange suitcase weights and find warm clothes for the kids. We learned from our mistakes and laid out the kids’ travel clothes the night prior, also packing everything away as concisely as possible. TIP! If you’re leaving a cruise ship, skip the breakfast and order room service the NIGHT BEFORE. As long as the Thermos top is tightly secured, your coffee will be piping hot in the morning, AND you’ll save precious time getting your family off the ship.

Hope these tips are helpful and have fun on your next adventure!

This post is sponsored by Quidsi.  However, all opinions and travel tips are my own.

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Comments

  1. We go to the parks every year, but have yet to do a Disney cruise. It’s on our bucket list, though.

  2. It’s important to pack as organized as possible when you’re traveling with kids. These are very good tips. I do the same things.

  3. These are some great tips. We love to have a way to store dirty clothes separate from clean ones. It helps at the end of the trip.

  4. These are great tips. Especially the ordering breakfast on the cruise the night before and skipping the real breakfast, what a timesaver.

  5. These are really great tips! It can be hard to travel with kids, but so worth it in the end.

  6. These are great tips! We plan to travel more this year. These tips would really be helpful!

  7. Your kids must have loved this trip.
    I hope they appreciated your trip planning – it looks great.

  8. Our Family World says:

    great family tips! i was planning to go on a trip on March with the kids! thanks for sharing the ideas!

  9. Great tips! I’m traveling in March and April so this will be helpful for me, as I need to start planning and getting things organized!

  10. These are all helpful tips. It would be great if packing and getting ready for a trip would not be the role of only one person (the mother in this case). I think creating a checklist for the kids to follow would be helpful for them to pack their stuff.

  11. That last part is sooo important. I think most people forget about the trip home and having to get everything back together and loaded up. That is one of the most stressful parts of a trip.

  12. these are great tips. I cant wait to hear more about your trip, sounds like it would have been a great time

  13. These are excellent tips! Having your children carry their own bags helps tremendously!

  14. It’s been a while since we have traveled with the kids. Probably because we didn’t have tips like this! 🙂

  15. shannon fowler says:

    The last day is always the hardest part for me. Im always worried about leaving something or missing a flight.

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