They say traveling with kids can be exhausting and sometimes can get a bit crazy. While this may sometimes be true, I still love traveling with my kids. Sure it can get pretty rowdy and tiring but I love seeing them get excited to discover a place they’ve never experienced.
I know there had been a lot of posts on tips regarding traveling with kids but since we truly enjoyed our most recent family trip to Singapore, I thought I’d share some of the things we did that made it a memorable and hassle-free family vacation.
LET THEM PLAN, PREPARE & PACK WITH YOU
Planning your trip is first and foremost. Before anything else here are some things you need to discuss with your family:
What do you want to do?
Which part of the country do you want to stay at?
How long will you be there?
Answering these can help you plan your days during your vacation. Knowing what to do, where to stay and for how many days can also ultimately help you with what to wear and what to bring.
Quick tip: Use packing cubes to help you organise your things. These cubes from Pac & Go has proven very helpful to me since I had to sort out my kids & my outfit for each day. Also I have my kids involve during packing. I would ask them what clothes they want to wear and if they want to bring anything else. This has saved me time thinking about what to bring.
LET THEM LOOK FORWARD TO THE TRIP
Riding a plane is an adventure itself for my kids. And when we told them where we’re headed they got even more excited. So prior to the trip, we have them look at Singapore and what it has–different modes of transportation, Sentosa Island, Universal Studios, Gardens By The Bay, and River Safari among other things. They were super excited & even did a countdown 10 days before our trip!
They’ve build up their anticipation that during our 3-hour flight going to Singapore, they were so well-behaved.
My seat mates enjoyed their meals and the in-flight movies they picked out for themselves. I was anticipating they’d be fussy given our flight was early in the morning, but was surprised to find them enjoying the ride.
Quick tip: Bring your child’s favorite toy or anything that soothes him when he’s sleepy or tired. You can also download movies or educational games on your phone which your child can enjoy during the flight.
LET THEM TRY & SEE NEW THINGS
I never thought my kids would enjoy museum visits as much as theme parks. They were visually stimulated seeing all the beautiful paintings as well as the majestic architecture of the museum itself. Don’t be hesitant to expose your kids to a place or an activity they’ve never tried. I notice kids are more open to seeing & trying new things more than adults. So use this as an opportunity to expose your kids to new things.
You can read more about the places we visited HERE.
I myself was surprised that my kids appreciated our time in the museum. Exposing them to places like this can widen their view of the world and appreciate not just the arts but the culture of the country they visited as well.
Quick tip: Ask them questions about the things they see. This will spike curiosity for them since you are the one asking the question instead of the other way around–this will make them more interested in what they see.
LET THEM BE SILLY & LET YOURSELF BE SILLY TOO
I think sometimes we parents forget that kids are kids and they’re allowed to act silly and funny. Though there are places where they should be of utmost behavior, it’s okay to let them be silly most of the time. You’d be surprised at how they can initiate good behavior even when you don’t ask them to. This was the case for my 4 year old son. He’s naturally rowdy and wouldn’t sit still most of the time but whenever I join his silliness–he feels very happy about it, so much so that he ends up behaving even if I don’t ask of him.
Here’s my son Juro after our museum visit. When he asked if he can remove his sticker, we all agreed to remove it at the same time and we all ended up sticking it to him. It was so funny that he was surprised to see everyone acting all silly!
Quick tip: If your kids behave appropriately at certain places that require them to, make it your duty as a parent to be silly with them when they’re not required to be so. Family vacation is more fun & stress-free if you laugh about the set backs or even the mundane moments in between the memorable ones.
LET THEM TAKE A BREAK
Usually family vacations require full itinerary until the very last day. I figured the reason why this trip is much more happier and steadier than our previous ones is simply because we had time to take a break. Our days weren’t filled to the brim that our kids got to take their afternoon naps before we headed out again. We even asked them what they wanted to do during our free time–they always opt for bath tub time. So make sure to plan your trip properly and consider having free time (an hour or two) for your kids to rest so they won’t be too tired. Remember, happy kids equals happy parents!
While my kids took their breaks (read: afternoon nap & bath tub time) I on the other hand had to finish some work. Though I didn’t had a break like they did, they were nice enough to let me have one while we were waiting for our ride. I took this shot while I was sitting by the lobby of our hotel, literally taking a 5-minute break. When I asked if they were okay, they just smiled and said they’ll watch the luggage for me. Haha. Too cute!
Quick tip: Don’t worry about your kids being bored while you take a break. Sometimes being bored is needed so they get to enjoy & appreciate the activities you’ve planned.
LET THEM MAKE MEMORIES
More than the places you’ve visited and things they’ve experienced, what they take from the trip is the feeling it has made them feel. The purpose of our family vacation really is to make memories and to enjoy each other’s company. So this is what we did. My firstborn even asked if she can borrow my spare phone so she can take photos and document some of her favorite moments during our trip–you can read about it HERE.
Quick tip: One of the airport games my kids & I like playing is finding the gate. They check the boarding pass and try to locate where our gate is. This makes waiting in the airport more fun & definitely tolerable.
Above all, make sure your kids are comfortable during your vacation. From the clothes they wear to the place they visit. When they’re comfortable, it makes traveling easier for them. There’ll be few to non-grumpy moments which in return paves way for more fun and memorable ones. Thank you so much Singapore for letting us experience a wonderful vacation!