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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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15 thoughts on “Does travel have to stop once you have kids?”
I don’t have kids but I believe traveling once you have kids is possible. I think it relies more on the mindset of the parents. These tips are awesome, more parents should read this post.
Loved reading this!! I don’t have kids yet but people often tell me that once I have some my travel days will be over. I sure plan on proving them wrong one day (and tips like these will likely help!).
I couldn’t agree more! We have been travelling all of our life. When Floris was 5 weeks we took him on his first trip outside the country, When he was 7 months we made a roadtrip through the USA. We did the same with our baby girl. They are 2 and 4 now and LOVE travelling, even the 18 hr flights ;).
Its a shame people think you shouldn’t travel with your kids, I have seen them grow during our travels, they love it, we love it :).
Kudos to you! Traveling with kids provides them with an education that they cannot receive from any institution. Teachers label it: ‘world experienced.’ Your child has world experience. Hmm, I call it living. They will grow up more confident, self-assured, and have less problems adjusting their sails when things don’t go as planned. Thank you for your inspirational site!
Great writing and information for the parents who loves to travel with kids. Some people think that you shouldn’t travel with your kids, but I personally feel that travelling with kids provides them new learning, adapt to different situations, making them more confident, a better and smarter human being overall. They really love it!
These tips are awesome, every parent who is planning to travel with kids must read it.
Traveling with the kids is completely possible, but more expensive. As simple as this. I know kids have to go to school, but you can be their teacher, especially now, when the schools are going out of the mainstream.
As long as you are alright with the cash flow, everything else is within a reach of your hand.
Loved reading this post. It’s exactly what I needed to show my wife and what I tell people all the time. Why does traveling need to stop when you have kids? I want to show my kid the world and share my passion for travel with them. I think it would be amazing. Congrats to you guys for figuring it out.
Awesome that you share the same enthusiasm for traveling with kids Edgar. Travel certainly doesn’t have to stop, you just need to adapt the style of your travel e.g. slow down, and kids are very good at adapting.
Awesome story! I have one kid and i always travel with him. Its more expensive but much more rewarding.
We love to travel and some of the best adventures my wife and I have had have been with our daughter. We love her ability to adapt to her surroundings (sometimes better than we do) and we love that we can share the whole world with her.
I love this! I am due with my first in February and mentioned to my sister I would like to come visit her in April (a 2 hour plane ride) She about had a heart attack that I would even think of going anywhere with a 2 month old! After her comment I was wondering if I was crazy or was being a “bad mom”. This post has really given me a lot of confidence to not worry about what others think and live my life how I see fit. Thank you! We are planning a trip to Thailand when baby is 6 months old!
Hi Allison, glad you found our post. And we love Thailand, check out this post on traveling there with kids: https://www.ytravelblog.com/thailand-with-kids/
Great tips! It’s definitely good to start them young, then neither they nor you know any better and it becomes part of normal life.