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Do you have Travel bags put together for your kids?
Travel while vastly rewarding can still be difficult. Traveling with kids even more so. Since my husband and I love to travel (we are heading to Europe next month for several months after which we will be buying an RV in which we plan to travel across America for a few years with our 3 crazy awesome kids aged 2-6). One of the keys we have discovered for a more pleasant experience traveling (whether long distances or short day trips) with young kids is haveing the perfect travel bags for each child.
The Travel Backpack:
The most important part of the perfect kids travel bag is choosing the right backpack. Many people when buying kids backpacks think to by full-size school backpacks because they can fit more stuff. While this isn’t bad for big kids, little kids (like mine) have a harder time carrying them. What happens when the kids can’t carry their packs? You end up doing so. Times that by multiple kids and the picture isn’t pretty.
After a lot of research, my husband and I decided on getting the CAMTOA Children Backpack For School Hiking Camping Mini Small Backpacks for our kids. The are smaller than normal backpacks but perfect for small children and well balanced so it doesn’t hurt their little backs. This pack has multiple pockets and places for 2 water bottles. The Lacing on the front can either compress the backpack or serve to hold extra items on the outside of the pack (like a favorite stuffed animal), On top of all that these packs looks pretty sweet! We got them on Amazon for $14.95 and have LOVED them. We use them not just for travel but also for day trips.
For those with small kids who are worried about taking their kids through busy places while traveling (Airports, Train Stations, Museums, Malls etc) and want to utilize a child harness/leash (no judgements if you do) I was told by close friends that you might want to buy a Brica By-My-Side Safety Harness Backpack for your kids Travel pack instead. It’s a backpack, so you can still pack it with all your kids could need. However, it also has a snap on harness to keep it on your small one and a spot on the base where a leash clicks on so your child can’t run off. I know this isn’t for everyone but if you are looking for something like this my friend’s swear by it.
You might also want to consider writing in permanent marker your contact info on the front of each kids backpack in case the worst should happen and you lose track of your child in a busy place.
Amazon Kindle, Kids Case, SD Card and Headphones:
Last year I broke down and got a Kindle Fire on Black Friday for my two oldest kids. We got them for homeschooling purposes as well as travel purposes. They have been such a great asset that we will be getting another Kindle for our youngest before we leave for Europe next month. Knowing that our children are young,
I knew getting a good kids case to protect the kindles was a must. In the end, we ordered Amazon FreeTime Kid-Proof Cases for our kid’s kindles. They have taken quite a kids beating but are still working great. When we got the cases we got different colors to tell whose kindle belongs to whom. Trust me this is important when dealing with kids.
One thing I love about the Kindle fire (over the iPad) other than the cost is that the Kind has a sd slot for extra memory. 32 GB SD cards aren’t expensive at all and made it possible to put several educational and fun apps on each of our kid’s favorite movies and TV show episodes (we have an extensive digital collection) and of course books. We like to load up a bunch of great books for our kids to read/have us read to them. This gives our kid’s hours of fun when traveling.
When we first got our kids kindles we didn’t think to buy headphones. BIG MISTAKE. Can you imagine the noise that multiple tablets all going at one can make? It’s not pretty. Yes, we soon discovered that Headphones are a MUST (especially when cooped up in a small space while traveling.) Before buying headphones we did a little research on what headphones would be best for our kids and ended up buying Toxi Volume Limited Wired Headphones for Kids. Our kids have used the headphones for 6 months and they are still working great. I love that they have a removable extension pad for small heads fo these headphones work for kids 3 and up!
Drinks are a MUST when traveling with kids (especially if they are snacking on anything.) Nothing is worse than being stuck in a car in the middle of nowhere or on an airplane and having your kids start whining that they are thirsty. When picking out drink cups for small kids make sure the water bottles are spill-proof. You don’t want your kids pouring their drinks all over themselves and your bags at their feet. Personally, I just use the Good to Grow Character (Organic Apple Juice) bottles with the spill proof lids. They come in a ton of different characters which is fun for kids and can be used over and over again. (after they drink the juice I clean them and use them for water.)
If your kids are older or you are going on a longer trip (like our upcoming 10+ hour flight to Europe) than you will probably want a larger drink bottle. When looking for a kids water bottle make sure that it is spill proof, large enough to fit a decent amount of drink in it while not being too bg to fit in their drink carriers on their travel pack. Due to not being able to take liquid through security at Airports (when you are traveling by air) just bring an empty water bottle with you that you fill up AFTER you get through security. I really like the CamelBak eddy Kids .4L Water Bottle. It comes in 16 different patterns so your kids can pick their favorite and always know whose is whose.
Coloring/Activity Book and crayons:
My kids love coloring and activity books. Granted my youngest just scribbles all over the books, but they still enjoy themselves. My oldest will color for hours. I usually just get them new coloring books before each trip at the local Dollar Tree. As for crayons I usually just put a small pack with 4-8 crayons in each pack as well as a pen or pencil for the older kids. They may not use these much in the car or on a plane but it is great for keeping the kids entertained at the hotel.
Like Water, having snacks while traveling is a MUST. Why? Well whether traveling by car, train or Airplane you can’t always stop for food every time your little ones get a little hungry. I don’t know about you but my kids get HANGRY (Hungry= Angry) when they haven’t eaten. The key is choosing snacks that your kids enjoy, aren’t too sugary (too many sweets make for hurting tummies) and travel well. Here are a few recommendations:
-Pre Sliced Apples
-Gold fish crackers
-Small bag of favorite cereal
-Small pack of nuts
-Small boxed Raisins
While the items listed above are always in my kid’s packs, other items I sometimes also pack depending on space are Small toys/action figures, sunglasses, (and for longer travel like a long drive or plane ride) a portable Rechargeable Battery for the Kindles.