Family Travel: Busy Bag Packing List for Travelling with Kids
Does your family do a lot of traveling during the holiday season? While fun and exciting, it can also be a little stressful with children. Keep your children occupied and engaged with a homemade busy bag tailored to their age and interests. Take the stress out of the holiday season with these easy tips!
We welcome you to review some of our DIY travel activity suggestions and build your own busy bag before holiday travel time. You’ll be glad you did!
Create a kid-friendly first aid kit in case of emergency. Remember—if you are doing any plane travel, you will need to keep any liquids at or under 3.4 ounces, and these should be in a clear plastic bag to speed up your wait at security. Here are some items you may want to include:
- Any prescriptions and/or allergy medication
- A fever and pain reducer (such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen)
- An antihistamine (such as Benadryl)
- Burn cream
- Antibiotic/pain-relieving ointment
- Lip balm
- Adhesive bandages
- Insect repellent
- A thermometer
- Hand lotion
Surprise Your Child
Buy small toys your child can add to his or her busy bag, and dole them out throughout your travels. These can be things like new toy cars, new Legos, or fun hair clips. Put each surprise in a separate brown bag and tie the top with a ribbon, or decorate the bag in some way that engages your child. When your child is being a good traveler, you can surprise him or her with a bag when he or she is least expecting it. Don’t go overboard—a few simple surprises can brighten your child’s day of travel tremendously.
Have Snacks at the Ready
Traveling can make it difficult to stay healthy with the time constraints and limited meal options on the road. However, you can combat this a bit by having healthy snacks at the ready when hunger strikes. Pack nutrient-dense foods, such as nuts, fruits, and whole grains, to stave off hunger longer.
Listen to a New Book
Grab an audiobook from your local library, or download audiobooks straight to your phone or music player. Choose a new book to keep your child engaged in what he or she is listening to. You can either play this in the car or give your child headphones to listen to it solo.
Let Children Play before Travel
If time allows, let your children play their energy away so that they are not quite as fussy during travel. You and your child will have a much more comfortable and relaxed ride if he or she is not bursting with energy and unable to work it all out.
Download Travel Apps
Take a look at travel apps to download onto your phone for more convenient travel. Apps like SitOrSquat, which can help you locate the nearest restrooms, TripIt, which organizes your itinerary, and PackPoint, which creates lists of packing items based on your trip, can help take the anxiety out of travel.
Bring Extra Clothing
Kids are messy, and sometimes the unexpected happens. Be prepared with extra clothing. If you’re taking a road trip, pack an extra pair of clothing for emergencies. If you’re taking a flight, add an extra outfit to your carry-ons. You never know when you might lose your luggage or need a change of clothes on the plane.
What makes your holiday travel easier with little ones? We would love to hear your suggestions in the comments section below!