It seems like a lot of work, and truthfully, it is. But traveling with kids allows you to connect with the places you`re visiting on a whole new level. And when theyre really little, even more so. Maybe youll have to stick to places a little more on the beaten track, and maybe youll have to go slower and not pack as much in, but its still worth the effort.
Why bother if they wont remember it? Why bother doing anything then? They cant read, why read to them? They cant talk, why talk to them? Silly, huh? Heres the thing: Experiencing new places and faces is good for everyone, including baby. And YOULL never forget it. Not a minute of it. The tough bits fade and you end up laughing at most of them anyway.
Why bother if theyll be bored? Theyd have more fun with Grandma. Maybe older kids would be bored on a trip if you havent let them help with the planning or considered their interests when plotting out the itinerary. But heres the thing with kids, they love their parents and want to be with them. Novel, right? And the younger the baby, the more they just want to be with you and only you. Cherish this time, as I believe its fleeting. And bored? Not when theyre tiny. As a toddler my daughter could be fascinated for hours by a scrap of paper. And my infant son thinks a plastic cup is the coolest thing ever. When theyre easily distractible, cherish this time too!
Why bother? A baby is a lot of work. Yes a baby is a lot of work. And a toddler is even more! There are naps, meals, diapers and routines to think about anyway, you may as well be somewhere nice/different/interesting. A bonus? Not being at home means no household chores, so you actually CAN sleep when the baby does.
So whats the best part about traveling with babies? Once theyre a toddler, they know what to expect. And once theyve traveled a few times, you get a kid that knows whats appropriate on travel days, and that theyll be rewarded with a great time somewhere fun with Mommy and Daddy. Repeated travel at a young age has created a great young traveler in our daughter, whos 4. Shes been on 9 trips, and her baby brothers been on a handful too. The problem we have now is not Are we there, yet, its When can we go?!
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Corinne McDermott is the founder of Have Baby Will Travel: Your Family Travel Guide for Babies and Small Children. Mama of two, shes appeared on Canadas top-rated talk & morning shows delivering tips on travel with tots, and her writings been featured in Canadian Family magazine. Corinne contributes to TheBump.com, Real Moms Guide, … Her advice has appeared in Todays Parent magazine and on SheKnows.com. Recently, shes been praised by TimesOnline.co.uk as a top Family Travel tweeter: @hvbabywilltrvl.