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I’ll never forget the first time it happened to me. I had a small baby bump poking through my sky blue singlet and ran into someone I knew on the street.
“Oh well. Looks like the travel is over for you now.”
I just stared blankly at them.
I can’t remember their response, nor anyone else’s. I’m sure it had something to do with status quo, fear, and a lack of awareness of the strength of your own inner power to create your dream no matter what.
I received comments like that for the remainder of my pregnancy. And the next one, despite the fact that my first child had her first plane flight at 3 months old, her first overseas trip at 6 months old, and her first international relocation at 9 months old.
Once again determined to prove them wrong, our second child, Savannah had her first flight at 6 weeks old and her first overseas trip at 8 weeks old.
They’re both now 9 and 5 and between them have visited 8 countries, completed an 18-monthh road trip of Australia and have now started a similar epic road trip across the USA.
Don’t let anyone tell you can’t travel with kids, or that it’s too hard.
We want parenting to be more than just surviving the motions of each day, but really thriving as a family unit experiencing life together.
Fears will never go away, but you can learn to master them.
I have many fears when it comes to traveling with my kids.
Will they hate it? Will I hate it? What if we run out of money? What if they get sick? What about catching dodgy public transport in some countries? What if they get too close to the water’s edge and a croc snaps them up? What if we visit xxx in the middle of a terrorist attack or war?
The truth is all of these things can happen whether you are traveling or not.
You can plan and prepare for them.
You are more powerful than your fears and doubts have you believe and anything is possible. You know that already.
Here are a few tips to make family travel a reality
1. Prioritize for it
The first step is to prioritise. When we prioritise things we are far more likely to create them as a reality.
How important is travel to you? Why do you want to continue to make it a reality? What challenges do you envision in doing so? How can you plan for and overcome these?
2. Research and learn
How are others managing to travel with their kids? One of my most empowering mantras I’ve used to create the life I want is, ‘if someone else can do it I can too.’
I travel with my kids frequently, that’s proof you can too. There are many people doing it, there’s more proof. Research and learn how they make it work. They’ll help you learn the tips and the strategies and how to make it a reality for you.
3. Create a money plan
I know! You can’t travel without money, right? This always seems to be the biggest barrier to travel. I’ve never really travelled with a lot of money saved, but I’ve always believed in my power to create the money I’ve needed for my dream.
I started traveling when I was 21 and slipped right into working in other countries. This gave me the money I needed and the travel I desired.
I still work and travel, but this time I have my own portable business. There are so many ways you can creatively earn the money you want for travel, as well as save money for travel, and find cheap deals on the road.
4. Start small, slow and local
Traveling slow and local will be best for your wallet and your stress levels. Take your travel mindset and apply it to life with your children in your home region.
Get used to traveling together by exploring unknown areas in your hometown. See it through a traveler’s eyes. You’ll be amazed at how much you’ll feel like you’re traveling and how comfortable you’ll quickly get traveling with each other. You’ll soon start to realize that travel with kids is not so hard and you can do it after all.
When you’re comfortable, stretch out that zone a little more by taking a trip a little further away, and then keep stretching it until you hit the overseas comfort zone.
The more you practice and love it, the more you’ll prioritize to make it a consistent reality.
5. Focus on the gift
Roll with the punches, don’t stress about what to pack and everything that can possibly go wrong. That’s causing a lot of unnecessary anxiety. I know you’re smart enough to figure it out as you go along. It’s no different to when you traveled on your own, there are just a couple of extra people now.
Treasure the memories and focus on the gift of spending amazing moments together. They go too fast and you want something to look back on to remember the years with your children by.
Nothing gives greater joy, nor reward than travel.
My belief is that parenting is hard, no matter where you are or how you choose to live your life. The only difference between living a life without travel to one with is what you feel the parts in between the challenges with.
A normal life is filled with running your kids here there and everywhere, releasing them to school, managing the household tasks, and trying to fit some fun in between.
When you travel those ordinary moments turn into extraordinary ones spent exploring, discovering, relaxing, connecting and having fun.
Now you’re creating incredible memories together. You’re tightening your family bond, you’re getting to know your children on a deeper level, and as you watch them grow you’re not left wondering where the years went by. You lived each one with them fully.
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Have you feared the end of travel once you have kids? How are you embracing family travel with kids?
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