traveling with kids

Traveling long distance with kids

Traveling long distance can be tough. Traveling with kids can be a nightmare. So, the two together, well that could potentially be a little tricky. Children struggle to sit still at the best of times, never mind when they are excited about a holiday or trip. This is made even worse of course by the fact that they have to sit still, there’s not really anywhere for them to go. They can become fidgety, upset, tired, agitated, bored and their behavior can become challenging.

This doesn’t mean that it can’t, or shouldn’t be done. Traveling is different with kids, but no less amazing. Visiting new locations, far away from home is a fantastic chance to see the world. For children, it can be wonderful. It gives them a chance to explore new cultures, meet new people, eat new foods and try new activities. As parents watching them explore, filled with wonder and excitement can be nothing short of magical. So, here are some great tips for making traveling long distance with your children more bearable.

Snacks and Drinks

Snacks and drinks are a must on any flight, whether it’s a few hours or a lot longer. Children get hungry and bored very quickly, and snacks can solve both problems. Things that last a long time like lollipops are great and will help ease any pressure. But, try to also include some healthy options, so you do not also have to deal with a huge sugar rush.

Remember to also pack easy to reach drinks, baby wipes for sticky fingers and a bag for any rubbish.


Toys are of course a great way to keep kids from getting bored. But, when you are flying, there’s not much space. Think of things that are in one piece that can’t get broken or lost on the flight. Coloring books and pencils can be a great option, as can large action figures and books. Travel board games can be handy for older children with a longer attention span.

Lots of Screen Time

Most of us spend huge amounts of time trying to limit the amount of time our children spend with their eyes glued to a screen. But, on a long-distance flight, they can be a lifesaver. A tablet with pre-downloaded games and films is a good idea. For younger children with short attention spans, download a series of their favorite TV show, with shorter episodes that they can keep going back to.


Try to get them up earlier than usual and keep them awake before the flight, even if they’d normally nap in that time. If you are lucky, they might nap for a long portion of the flight. Take their favorite pillow and blanket to make it easier for them to settle.


On a long-distance flight, it’s important for everyone to get up and stretch their legs occasionally. This is the same for children. Take them for regular walks up and down the plane.

Stay Close to the Airport

If you’ve got a long flight, the last thing you need is another long trip to your hotel as soon as your land. Stay somewhere like Protea Hotel O.R. Tambo Airport, even if It’s just for that first night to make the journey easier.

Traveling doesn’t need to be difficult. Try to turn it into an exciting adventure.

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Founder of Turn It To Trvl. After being made redundant from my digital marketing job, in the UK, I decided I no longer wanted to work the traditional 9-5. I found a volunteer opportunity in Malawi in 2015 and am now freelancing from the warm heart of Africa. Curently building a portfolio of clients and trying to inspire more people to live a life of travel.
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