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Traveling with a Toddler

Sep 6, 2007
Are you looking forward to a long, leisurely vacation this year? If you have a toddler to look after, you'll really feel that you've earned it! But traveling with a toddler - whether by road or by air - can feel like hard work in itself. How can you cope for hours at a time with a small bundle of energy who has nowhere to run about? How can you keep your toddler from distracting the driver or annoying other passengers?

Successful traveling with a toddler takes patience and skill, but most important is preparation. Although you'll probably be feeling excited about the upcoming break yourself, try not to let that excitement show. In the days leading up to your trip, keep everything as normal as possible. On the day itself, answer your child's questions about the trip calmly and straightforwardly. Avoid giving sugary treats, which will just result in excess energy. It's a good idea to feed a heavy meal before the journey begins, so that your toddler will be sleepy, but avoid tangy or spicy foods, which are more likely to cause travel sickness. If this does occur, ginger biscuits are a great way of relieving it without the worries associated with medication.

When traveling, have a blanket handy for your sleepy toddler to curl up in. A blanket can also be used for simple games involving hiding, and, if spread out when you play with toys, it can help to catch escaping items. You should always have toys at the ready when traveling with a toddler, but avoid items that can easily be thrown. Self-contained activity boards are ideal, giving children more control over what they want to do when, but bear in mind that they can be noisy. Toys that encourage learning activity, such as counting and memory games, are ideal as concentrating on them will tire your child out and encourage napping, the easiest way to travel.

Traveling with a toddler can also be complicated by the fact that young children can't adjust their food and toilet needs to fit in with an adult schedule. Airline staff will understand this and will provide the facilities and assistance you need, but if you're traveling by car you should be prepared to pull over by the roadside to deal with toilet emergencies. Food needs are easier to cope with - have some low sugar snacks in your bag. Don't rely on airlines to provide appropriate food. Crunchy fruit and vegetables can be fun to play with as well as to eat, and exploring the tastes and textures of several different foods can be a good way to pass the time.

Traveling with a toddler will always require patience and effort, but it doesn't have to be exhausting. Make the journey into an entertaining adventure in itself and you and your toddler will arrive at your destination fresh and all ready to have fun.
About the Author
Jamie Jefferson writes for Momscape.com , Susies-Coupons.com and Susies-Travel-Coupons.com where you'll find hand-selected online coupons, coupon codes and travel discounts.
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