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Single Parent Travel: Tips for Single Parents Traveling with Kids

Jul 1, 2008
If anyone deserves a vacation, it's a single parent.

Managing your children's lives by yourself, in addition to supporting the family on one income is a tough job. And, when it comes to taking a vacation, the travel industry needs to come to some realizations about the reality of the single parent traveler and his or her family.

If you've been frustrated by package deals geared toward couples or two parent families, you'll be happy to know that you are not alone. Many single parents feel the same way you do. Fortunately there are solutions to help you travel economically and stress-free in a way that's fun for all.

Traveling as a single parent starts with planning the right kind of trip. Going on a vacation only to spend the majority of your time doing what the kids want to do is no way to relax. In order to keep balance in the family, make democratic decisions on where to go and what to do.

During your vacation, spend one third of your time doing something that you want to do with kids in tow, one third of the time doing something specifically for the kids and the final third doing something you'll all enjoy. Before you head out on your trip, type up an itinerary of the places you'll see. This way there won't be arguments while you're on the road about where you're going and what you'll do when you get there.

You can save a great deal of money by taking your own food. Stock up on granola bars, energy bars, powdered drink mixes, dried fruits and other non-perishable items so you don't have to spend a lot of money on meals.

Although it's nice to enjoy the food of the culture you're visiting, you have to remember that money spent on food could be spent on sightseeing and other activities. You could aim to eat breakfast and lunch from your bags and then eat dinner out. This way you'll save money without feeling deprived.

Balance your daily activities so that you and your children don't end up too tired. Most of the problems with kids on vacation has to do with them getting overtired and cranky. Even though you're on vacation, don't push your kids too hard with the activities. Balance a morning at the museum with a relaxing afternoon picnic at a park. If you're visiting an amusement park, try to spread your visit over two days so you can hit all of the big rides without stressing yourself or your kids out.

The travel industry is starting to change slowly and is recognizing the need for package deals that don't include two adults. Make sure to ask your travel agent or do some research online to find this kind of packaged vacation. You should be able to save on your vacation without paying for two adult tickets.

Hopefully, these tips have you excited about your next vacation as a single parent. With a little practice and a lot of planning you can have a dream vacation that both you and your kids can enjoy.
About the Author
Jamie Jefferson writes for Momscape.com, where you'll find Expedia coupons, as well as discounts and promotions at Beaches Resorts, which sometimes offers packages and discounts for single parent travel.
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