Most families take a lot of time to save money and plan for their annual family vacation. Keeping your children safe when traveling is a top priority to ensure that you have a fun-filled holiday.
Being prepared can avoid potential disasters. Below are some safety tips to avoid turning your vacation into a horror-show.
Family Travel Safety Tips
Prepare for Road Trips Early
Taking your family on a road trip can be a cost-effective way to spend quality family time together and bond with your children.
Going on a road trip is usually less expensive than flying, especially if your car gets good gas mileage. Your family will also benefit by having the freedom to leave, stop, or keep driving whenever you want rather than getting stressed out about having to catch a plane or train.
Some ways to make your trip more enjoyable and safe are:
- Be prepared by making sure you pack everything you need such as a first-aid kit
- Pack healthy snacks to avoid eating too much junk food typically found at rest stops and gas stations
- If you are traveling with small children, make sure you have car seats that are compliant with all safety requirements
- Keep your children busy with games and toys to entertain them while in the car
Tips for Cruising and Chartering
If you are planning on taking your family on a cruise, you probably have done your research to find the right line you want to the desired destination. Even after you have booked your ship and chosen the stateroom, there are several other important things to consider such as:
- Can you drive to port or do you have to fly? If you plan to fly, be sure to leave enough time in case of flight delays.
- How will you get to the pier? Transfers are included in some packages. If you didn’t book a package, check into taking a shuttle or a taxi.
- Be sure to read the documentation give to you by the cruise line for important information like if you need a passport or not, the dress code for the ship, and beverage packages options.
- Take the ship safety drills seriously. The first one will take place before the ship sets sail. You want to know what steps you will need to take in case of an emergency to keep your family safe
Another option for a family vacation on the water is to rent a charter. This is not just for celebrities and billionaires as many people might assume. Many companies will rent charters with several bedrooms that can comfortably accommodate families. You can either sail yourself or hire a captain.
Taking to the water for your next family vacation will help you spend quality time with your family and disconnect from electronic devices. It is a time to get reacquainted with each other again without the usual everyday distractions of jobs, schools, and cell phones.
One of the best boating tips is to charter a boat that fits your budget. Many companies will rent charters with several bedrooms that will comfortably accommodate families. You can use Boat Planet to find a boat to charter and hire a designated captain.
It doesn’t matter if you are new to boating or have vast experience, making sure your boat is in tip-top shape is the most important safety tip that can’t be ignored.
If you charter a boat, the following boating season tips will help you identify the critical tasks you need to do to ensure your trip runs smoothly. You don’t want to find yourself in trouble once you are on the water. A few examples are:
- Check hoses and clamps for dry rot, soft spots, and cracking
- Use only marine-grade power cords
- Check fluid levels
Watch Out For Scams
It is an unfortunate reality that no matter where you go in the world, there will be people who will try to scam you and trick you into paying money for nothing. Who wants to ruin their dream vacation by throwing their hard-earned money out the window?
When you are traveling with children, it is easy to get distracted. However, it is important that you pay attention to what is around you. You can avoid getting caught up in common scams by being attentive and informed.
One suggestion on how to avoid possible scams is to do a simple Google search about “worst scams” at your destination of choice. Many locations are known for specific scams in their area such as:
The adage, forewarned is forearmed is great advice if you want to avoid getting scammed while on vacation.
Airplane Travel Safety
If you plan on taking an airplane for your next family vacation, you should pay attention to the following safety tips:
- Keep their seatbelts on at all times
- If your child has to use the bathroom, go with them to prevent the child from getting hurt
- Call the airline before leaving on a trip to make sure they have child-size emergency equipment such as life preservers
- Don’t seat your child in an aisle seat
Create a Plan in Case of Separation
This will not be an issue if your children are small as they will always be by your side and within reach. If your children are a little older, you might decide it is safe enough for them to wander around on their own.
Or because they are a little older, you might take your eyes off of them for a second or two and lose them in a crowd.
Talk to your children about how they can find you and who they can trust should they get lost. One suggestion is for them to look for a cash register and ask the person working behind it to call your cell phone. Another suggestion is to discuss a pre-designated spot to meet should you lose each other.
When traveling with children, the most important things to remember are that you are the parent, you are the adult, and ultimately it is your responsibility to keep them safe. As long as you follow general safety precautions, keep your eyes open and on your children, there is no reason you can’t have a wonderful family vacation.
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