Traveling with kids across the globe doesn’t mean you have to be limited to amusement parks, zoos, and playgrounds. You can make it work into your great European vacation getaway without sacrificing too much on the itinerary and emotional stamina. You can create some great memories traveling with the whole family and maybe even become closer to your kids as the travel experience teaches them important life lessons. How many kids actually get the chance to see the other side of the world outside of their television screens?
Mom and Dad, the Explorers
Take this opportunity to become your child’s own personal tour guide and they will learn more than they ever would in sociology book. Kids are more likely to interact with the locals than your typical tourist. With those interactions brings new experiences and insights into the local culture. You’ll probably end up learning a few things from your children, too.
Europe can be surprisingly accommodating for tourist families, especially in the more developed transportation countries. They actually beat out America in a lot of various ways, which isn’t too surprising considering how wide our quality of infrastructure varies throughout the country.
The best way to insure a smooth and adventurous vacation in Europe is the plan, plan, and plan ahead. That includes getting your children prepared, too. The way you do that is to start getting them excited for the different places you’ll be visiting while in Europe and teaching them all about them. Schools don’t usually do a great job in educating us about the rest of the world here in the States, kids usually learn more about places like France, Greece, and Spain from what they watch on TV. Plan some family time with the Travel Channel and movies set in Europe, I guarantee they’ll be pumped-up by the time the time comes to depart.
The key to a successful European family vacation is to slow down and to temper expectations. Don’t overdo it. Tackle one or two key sights each day, mix in a healthy dose of pure fun, and take extended breaks when needed. If done right, you’ll take home happy memories to share for a lifetime.
The Best Time to Take Your Kids Abroad
When is the appropriate age to start taking your kids with you around the globe? Well, it is really up to you, but to get the best experience as a little one, it is really best for them to be able to handle lots of walking and some degree of maturity to be able to handle any small bumps in the road that are bound to happen on any extended trip.
Many parents coddle their children and then get mad when they fuss over the smallest of inconveniences. This can turn a fun learning experience into a boring, stressful, and, potentially, wasteful use of a vacation getaway.
Teenagers can actually be more irreprehensible than grade-schoolers. The little ones have their bad days, but if a teenager decides the parents just “don’t understand,” they’ll forfeit the entire trip and choose to not have a good time at all costs.
So, the short answer is: you know your kids better than anyone else and you should make the decision based on your relationship and remember that you can’t force one of those TV show family’s “happy ending” stories.