Most children love going on adventures, discovering new places, and trying new things. However, anxious, shy, introverted children who love routines can find travelling overwhelming. In fact, everything that makes travelling fun can become a source of stress and anxiety trigger for them.
Parents of these children can find it difficult to make family travel plans. Even if they do, they may prefer staying close to home or planning short trips only. Parents may also find it difficult to enjoy when their child is not feeling their best. However, travel anxiety in children shouldn’t be a hurdle for fun family times.
If you are a parent with a child or children who feel stressed during family travel, read on to find some effective solutions to soothe travel anxiety in children:
Making a detailed travel itinerary can help you prepare your child for travel. Travel anxiety in children mostly kicks in due to uncertainty about what is happening or going to happen. Therefore, informing them of the travel plans in detail can reduce their stress and keep them relaxed.
Let your child know even if there are unplanned hours or possibilities of last-minute plan changes. This will allow them to keep up when these instances occur and help them to stay at peace.
Travel plans often involve too much activity, which can easily overwhelm an anxious child. It can become the primary cause of stress and travel anxiety in children. As a parent, you can make travelling easy and fun for your anxious child by ensuring they get enough rest.
Don’t make the child start and end their day earlier and later than they are used to. Even if they wake up early in the morning, spend one-on-one time with them as you do at home. You can enjoy family travel games with them, read them a story, remind them of the specific day’s itinerary, etc.
Adding a break each day can also help. For example, if you planned a few activities for the morning, consider getting back to the hotel for two to three hours in the afternoon. Allow every family member, including children, to rest and unwind before getting fresh and ready to go out in the late afternoon.
Travel anxiety in children can intensify if they feel neglected or experience too much change or lack of comfort. But you can easily ensure comfort, engagement, and entertainment for your anxious child by getting some travel essentials for kids.
For example, flight seat extenders or toddler travel cots can provide extra room for your child to sleep peacefully. Keeping a fresh change of clothes, a travel first aid kit, and the child’s medicines handy can also help. Similarly, a travel activity tray or family travel games can keep the child occupied with various activities like reading, watching cartoons on the iPad, playing with toys, and drawing and colouring.
Travelling with anxious children can be fun; you only have to inform them of what’s happening, keep them comforted and entertained, and ensure they get enough rest throughout the vacation. Apply these tips on your next family trip to make it more fun
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