The Worst Age to Travel with Kids

Craig and I were contemplating a possible year long adventure through Southeast Asia.

It’s our favourite region, brings much cheaper travel, and we thought it would be a good base to travel slowly so we could work on our business at the same time.

After our two week trip to Thailand, we have completely scrapped the idea.

For the amount of effort that is required on our behalf business wise, the pressures of travelling with small children through South East Asia proved too much.

Our girls at the time were 5 and 18 months. Kalyra is a pretty good age to travel with, although she can get tired easily and likes to complain.

Savannah, on the other hand, is a toddler, hell-bent on exploring the world with the energy of an every ready bunny.

the worst age to travel with kids

The Worst Age to Travel with Kids

The Toddler Age, in my opinion, is the worst age to travel with kids

On our Thailand trip there was absolutely zero time to relax or to absorb anything around me. I felt stressed, overburdened, and highly anxious. We should be travelling to experience lightness and joy, not heaviness and stress.

Until she is near 3, when it gets so much easier, we will be looking more to road trip travel through Australia, Europe and America.

At times I feel like a bit of a cop out—you know when the going gets tough, the fake and softies fall apart.

We like to share with you the truth about travel on our blog. It can be very tough and full of challenges. Never be afraid to change direction or style to whatever brings you the most comfort and joy.

The Challenges of Toddler Travel

Here’s why we feel Toddler Ville is the WORST age to travel and how we found it extra burdensome in South East Asia.

Toddlers Can’t Sit Still

toddler travel in Thailand
I was not letting go

They’ve just learned to walk; they’ve got to practice this new skill. The legs won’t stop moving and if you hold them in your arms for a moments rest, the battle of the wriggles will begin.

Try having a conversation or listening to a tour guide when that happens.

Plus the roads in South East Asia are chaos, it’s a lot more challenging to let them walk on the sidewalk, or even in a wider spaced area, the trouble they can get themselves into are more prevalent.

On our balcony at the Hilton in Phuket was a large gap Savannah could possibly have stuck her body through (not 100% sure as we didn’t test it) and crashed to the pavement below. We couldn’t sit and relax on the balcony.

When we took a boat trip to Phang Ngha Bay (probably a stupid decision on our behalf) I almost had an anxiety attack and felt like I was going to vomit. There were far too many places she could climb and fall overboard.

The life jacket was on her and I battled with the wriggles for the journey, not able to enjoy the scenery much at all.

Plane Journeys are Taxing with Toddlers

Flying Air Asia X
Trying to keep her entertained on the plane

Long Flights are Not Good with a Toddler; they will hate the restricted space.

They have trouble sleeping and if they get upset and start crying you worry so much about disturbing the peace of the other passengers that your chest and stomach becomes tightly wound and your blood pressure shoots up.

You are all so exhausted by the end of it.

If it is a long flight to another time zone, you might be dealing with your energetic toddler from 4am when they spring out of bed ready to go. (Read: Why we will never fly with Air Asia long haul again)

Toddlers Need Car Seats

travel with a toddler in Thailand (1 of 1)
Challenging travel

This was probably one of the most stressful experiences in Thailand.

Usually, when we are driving at home, the girls are strapped in and you can have down time. It’s one of the only places you can as a parent.

Not in South East Asia, they don’t have car seats, half the time they don’t have seat belts. We were driven around a lot, for hours at a time. Trying to keep Savannah still and wrapped in our arms was simply awful. Once they get to the age of around 2 they start to learn how to sit still.

Toddlers Need Nappies

A headache to carry around, to change and a lot of the time to find rubbish bins to put them in.

Toddlers May Still Need Bottles

Holy crap this is a logistical nightmare!

First, you have to carry the bottles and the formula and then you have to figure out a way to wash the bottles each day. You can’t use tap water as it is not safe for drinking. Depending on where you stay you may not even have facilities to wash them.

We had a kettle in our Bangkok Hotel and the Phuket Hilton, so we filled up the sink with boiling water and detergent and washed them that way.

Our accommodation in Bangtao Bay, thankfully, had lovely workers in the kitchen who would wash them for us. Apartment stays are way better with small children.

Toddlers Need a Pram

 toddler travel in Thailand
Keeping her entertained near the pool

Prams are helpful for getting around and naps when you are out. It’s also a gigantic pain in the arse to haul this extra luggage and to navigate crooked Thai streets and busy Sky trains.

Toddlers Need Naps

This can be a good thing if you can get them to sleep because it will give you a break.

But, their routine will be different and they could be overstimulated. If you don’t get them to sleep during the day, once 5pm comes you’ll be reaching for something stronger than a glass of wine.

Also, for night time sleeping, they need a portable cot. In Thailand, this was hard to come by. We had four nights in a hotel, where Savannah did not have a cot. It’s always fun to chase them around a room at 3am.

Meal Time is a Nightmare

dinner time with toddler
A rare seated meal moment

Usually, toddlers are pretty fussy eaters. Changing to new food can prove a headache as they refuse to try new things and you have to resort to fries and cheese sandwiches, which cost more.

Judging by the throwing up Savannah did the day after the sandwich, perhaps the more dodgy option too.

Because toddlers like to wriggle and move, give up the idea of sitting down to enjoy a meal. You’re up down up down, getting indigestion as a result and perfecting the parent 5 min food throw down.

As a parent, pay attention to how quickly you eat—it’s a very common happening. A lot of the restaurants in Thailand are on busy main roads. Panic attacks. Again apartment stays where you can cook your own food while the kids run around are best.

Read more: How to manage a picky eater when you travel with kids

Toddlers Can’t Talk

They can’t tell you what they want or what they need. They can’t tell you when they are sick or where.

Savannah grunts and whines a lot. We soon discovered why it had escalated when she projectile vomited driving with a van full of people. We were stressed for days as we did not know if it was food poisoning, car sickness, or something worse.

Toddlers Can’t Really Entertain Themselves

Karon Beach Phuket Thailand
Yes! They’re playing by themselves.

This is not me saying I don’t want to play with my kids or give them attention, I just find it draining to do it every minute of every hour.

Even Kalyra is not great at entertaining herself. We couldn’t’ have a conversation with anyone without her pulling at our attention. When you are dealing with the challenges of travel this extra on demand attention can nearly break you. Sometimes you just need five minutes of quiet.

Toddlers are Teething

This was the moment for the first time in my life I actually wanted to go home.

We had Savannah sick for a couple of days and then the teething hit. The eye teeth – notoriously known as the most painful. She screamed for a day and two nights.

Our plans to relax on the beach for our last three days ended with the fist vomit.

They’re Too Young for Kids Clubs

Kids club Thailand
Kalyra loves Kids Club

Not that we ever really have time to make use of Kid’s Clubs, they are a great way to get a break.

Kalyra also loves them and begs us to go. We managed to squeeze in a two-hour visit for her at the Hilton Phuket. The starting age for most Kids Clubs is from 2-4 years of age.

phuket beaches
Travel with children is rewarding

Now, all of this is not meant to put you off travelling with your toddler

Part of our inability to deal with this also came with the fact we are travel bloggers and were on a work trip and had certain things we needed to do.

And of course to add to this stress, I was sick for a week, Craig ended up sick for a day, and our website had major issues.

So when the kids were in bed and we were up late at night to catch up on work, we weren’t working we were dealing with the stress of trying to troubleshoot our website. We are now weeks behind with work.

The combination of all these things did us in

We learned a lot, especially about how we really want to travel for the next couple of years. With the nature of what we do we have to simplify and make it a little easier for us and the girls.

But for you, you might have less going on and it’s “just a holiday” and not so much as a “business trip” so more able to deal with the challenges.

We ALWAYS recommend travelling with your children no matter what their age.

The rewards are worth overcoming the challenges. We recommend that you think more about the following:

  • Road trips
  • Apartment stays
  • Slow travel
  • Staying in just one region and one hotel
  • Resorts where there are many conveniences on hand
  • Bringing help (where was the nanny!!)

You can see our post on planning a trip to Thailand with kids and 19 tips for travel in Thailand with kids to help if you decide travel to Thailand or South East Asia with a toddler.

Read more Family Travel Tips

Can you think of any other reasons why toddler ville is the worst age to travel?

76 thoughts on “The Worst Age to Travel with Kids”

  1. I absolutely 100% agree with you. Even worse than travelling with a toddler as a single child is travelling with a toddler when you have an older child. There will be things that Scout (7) is allowed to do that Inky (2) can’t but that doesn’t stop her wanting to do it and it becomes a safety and princesswhingealot nightmare.

    On the flipside, the older child can “entertain” the younger, but it still isn’t enough for me to consider SE Asia travel at the moment! Kx

    1. Yes! The extra child can cause it’s own challenges! Kalyra and Savannah generally get on okay, and Kalyra is good every now and then with playing with her, but they can fight. For example this morning, Savannah whacked Kalyra in the face with her plastic plate. Before I spoke to Savannah, I had to remind Kalyra about how she had learned behaviour like this, like the pinches she likes to deliver sometimes!!

  2. A year long trip with toddlers? No, no, and hell no! I’ve been there done that and waiting on them to get a little older is a must for me. Sure, each child is different but there’s no way I’d consider it at that age.

    1. Yeah. I think you have to consider each child but also what the parents are willing to put up with. I think for a lot of people, the stress of it is way too much to bear, therefore it’s better to wait until they are older. If you had just one child too, I think it would be easier.

  3. Sorry Kaz but we had a totally different experience. We backpacked around the world for a year with Raya when she was a toddler and she was a fantastic traveller. It did however take a little while to get our heads around the difference to travelling with a child of this age. We never took a stroller either
    Just a carrier and thankfully she would fall asleep just about anywhere. Perhaps it is the temperament more than the child’s age. I know this is a great time to travel with kids before they start costing MUCH more on plane

    1. FAbulous Michelle!! Thank you for sharing. I think it is great for the readers to hear from those who have not had any problems. I know our Savannah is a little wilder than Kalyra so that could have been the result of a lot of our hair pulling. And you are right with the cost of the flights, it is much better to travel with a toddler before 2 to grab these bargains.

    2. I wonder if the difference is that you were traveling with just one child. One toddler is a world of difference different than two children. When it was just my husband, my daughter and I we were able to take totally different types of trips than we can now with my son who is 3 years younger. A backpacking adveture type trip with one toddler – maybe, depending on the child. Two kids including a toddler, probably much harder for most people!

      1. Depends on the personality of the toddler. We only went to the other side of Florida for 4 days, and he’s driving is nuts. We’ve taken him on trips like this before, and he’s been better, but this is the worst. We are both exhausted! Maybe it’s the age, he’s 2 years and 4 months. I enjoyed your post, because he also projectile vomited all over the car on the way here! Ugh, I miss real travel!

  4. My kids are 19months and 3years. I’m dreading the flight, but hoping that the rest will be ok. I was thinking of just taking the Ergo and not bothering with the pram, I know its a place to sleep but then its a faff to get about.
    Thankfully when we go to Thailand in a couple of months we’re staying in a villa – they can shop for us and send in a chef.
    I’m optimistic! there will be 4 adults and 4 kids so we’re planning a ‘child care’ rota so that we all get some down time!

    1. The child care rota sounds perfect! We were talking about next trip travelling with friends/family who have kids–makes it so much more enjoyable for everyone.

      The pram is a big decision. You could definitely leave it. We found it did come in handy for moments we needed to keep savannah still. A couple of times we had room in the van to put her inside, in the pram, which was soooo helpful!

  5. Totally agree! We went to Singapore with our almost 2 year old last year and he ended up with bronchitis! We had to cancel a couple of things and just felt awful carrying him round everywhere in such humid weather when he was so sick with high temps! We are going on a carnival cruise in a few weeks and hope this will be an easier way to travel! Kids club from age 2 🙂

    1. Oh no! There’s nothing worse than your child getting sick, you feel so helpless and of course guilty! That normal parent emotion. You will love the Carnival Cruise!! The Kids Club is awesome and there is so much to entertain the kids.

  6. My boys are 9 and 6 now but we’ve been traveling with them from the time they were a few months old and I couldn’t agree with you more. The 12-36 month age was THE absolute hardest travel period. We don’t think twice about long or short trips with them now but part of me wonders if those early experiences, as difficult as they were provided training of some sort for these later years.

    1. I could imagine they would Amanda. With Kalyra, I don’t think we travelled much between the ages of 10- 18 months, so we missed the real hideous part. She is definitely an amazing traveller now. Although, Savannah is a little wilder so it does depend on their temperament too

  7. You pretty much summed up our traveling life with our little guy! He and Savannah must be very close in age–he officially turned 18 months today, and we have also altered our travel schedule due to his needs & stage of development. We had plans of visiting Nicaragua last month & actually canceled the trip, which so not like us! We’ve vowed to take road trips closer to home, and only non-stop flights while we get over this toddler hurdle. And we’ve really realized the value of taking things slow. To add to your list, along the same lines as they can’t entertain themselves, they also have ZERO attention span (or at least our little guy does). Like you said, you are constantly working!

    1. Savannah is 18 months at the end of this month! So close in age. He sounds as challenging as our one, it must be the way the stars were aligned when they were born!!

      We hate changing our travel plans too, but this hurdle, on top of trying to run our business was too much! The road trips and slow travel is the key!

  8. I agree on the apartment stays option. Staying put and drastically changing your expectations is the key to having a good trip with kids. We’ve been on a couple of month-long trips to the US with our kids and staying in home rentals worked out very nicely.

    Rushing anything will not work with our kids, so just adapting to very slow travel is key.

    I still think it’s a very worthwhile age to travel with kids though. It’s the highlight of their lives so far and they are constantly still talking about experiences that we’ve had. The extra stimulation and entirely foreign experiences also play an important part in early age brain development, so I like to think it’s actually good for them as well 😉

    1. I think it is always good for them Peter, just sometimes a little more stressful for the parents 🙂 I think slow travel is definitely the key to making it work. They are far too little to join the Amazing Race.

  9. Thankfully we’ve been quite lucky with our travel, but we’ve never really taken abby anywhere after about 9 months.. they’re both coming with us to new zealand (they’ll be two and six months) but it’s a driving holiday and they’re both pretty good in the car. We’re planning a disneyland trip, but not until pepper is at least three (maybe even four so she enjoys it a bit more!) and it wigs me out that travel will be restricted for the next two and a half years. But I’d rather travel and enjoy it than travel and be stressed!

    1. Totally agree! There is no point spending all that time and money to just be stressed and want to go home. Your driving holiday will be awesome. I think road trips are definitely the way to go. We are holding off on the Disneyland trip too for awhile. Savannah would run muck!!

  10. Let me just chime in and re-iterate that as full-time travel bloggers where we are constantly taking notes, taking and editing photos, shooting and editing videos, and updating all the social media channels and dealing with emails and tech stuff does add a hell of a lot of stress and focus away from “just having a family holiday”.

    Without all these commitments I’m sure our experience would be much less stressful 🙂

    So keep on travelling guys, but yes, the toddler age is difficult.

  11. Howdy,

    This is an interesting topic because while I don’t like flying and therefore haven’t travelled o/s with my kids, we have taken them on a 10 week road trip through parts of SA and WA. They were then 7 and 10 (boys) and obviously this is much easier but if we wanted to go longer, we’d need to think about educating our own kids (gasp!!) Yet at that age, they will at least have some memories of the trip.

    I couldn’t have done it any earlier. Toddler ville is a tough age and I wouldn’t have been tough enough to manage it.

    1. 7 and 10 are perfect ages to travel. As you said they will remember, yet it is not too challenging for the parents. They would get so much learning from their experiences that school stuff wouldn’t be all that necessary!!

      I will home school the girls if needed but I can already see some of the clashes we would have. My two girls are probably more head strong than me!! Poor Craig

  12. Whilst we don’t have kids ourselves, we admire everyone we see travelling with their children. We think its such an important thing to allow them to experience such different cultures to those in the western world, and I’m sure they’ll grow into more rounded individuals. Although saying that I’m sure it can be challenging at times, especially in countries like India and those in SE Asia – the food is so different, and we noted whilst travelling through India that its hard to find food without any spice in it. Keep at it though – I’m sure your kids will feel so privileged that they had the chance to travel when they were younger!

    1. I think travelling to India with the girls would tip me over the edge into insanity.

      Craig and I talk about it all the time, and it is definitely off our bucket list for many years. We haven’t even attempted it ourselves yet!! I do like spicy foods though, but after 15 years of backpacking and hassle I don’t think I have the stamina for India anymore.

  13. I can totally relate. My kids are insane together now, and we never know what is going to happen when we take the younger one (he just turned 2) out. He doesn’t eat anything that has texture, spits out food and throws things on the floor, won’t sit in the stroller most of the time, and yells and hits when he doesn’t get his way. Our older one was never like this, but the way it is now, we won’t be taking the kind of trips we had hoped until things calm down. We did a big trip to Brazil last year and some smaller ones in California, and they all went well, but for all the reasons you mentioned, traveling with a toddler is exhausting.

    1. Oh wow, Savannah sounds exactly the same. It’s made us realize how well-behaved Kalyra was!!

      It is totally exhausting–they are so cute so much of the time and you love them to bits, but geez they can send you over the edge!

      I think it is best to take the break and regain your strength before going again.

  14. Yup, travelling with a toddler isn’t easy and strollers are usually useful only in airports and malls. Even then, it’s a challenge moving with a stroller when there are ONLY escalators. So I always bring a sling with me — the now defunct Hotslings and a couple of other brands. People in Asia love kids and are especially attracted to Caucasian kids which can be a blessing and a pain because they’d be giving your kid foods you normally wouldn’t feed them. The positive side: You’ll lose a lot of weight running after your toddler 😉

    1. Ha ha Mimi!! That is always a positive side. With waist starting to thicken again, I think I need to go back to Asia.

      We loved the attention our children got in Asia. It is so nice to know they have other people, strangers even, looking out for them and loving them too.

  15. Hi, I blog hopped from ProBlogger. We’re an expat family living in Dubai and have two kids – 9 year old girl and a toddler, now 16 months. We will be traveling to Japan (where we previously lived) in July when the toddler (a BOY, no less!!) is 1 year and 9 months. I see horror ahead of me!

    I try to keep a positive outlook about it – the 12 hours direct flight…but something tells me I’d be really exhausted before vacation actually begins!!

    1. Hi Grace!

      Thanks for following us over from Problogger. I think you have to focus on the positive otherwise your expectations might bring about things that otherwise may not have happened. But definitely be prepared 🙂 By July he should be settled into his legs a little more.

      Living in Dubai must be an awesome experience. Craig is going there at the end of March for a couple of days. I am jealous!

  16. Oh I could kiss you both! We had some of the most hideous experiences of our lives with toddlers. My eldest totally floored us when we lived in Pakistan and tried to travel anywhere. He was very hyper and turned out to have real special needs (ASD) but talk about a confidence destroyer.

    Another low was taking 17 month old very active twins to Fiji – to a resort!! No holiday for us, couldn’t believe it. We came back to Oz and decided to buy a beach house, relief all round.

    But we’re all good now, only problem is taking four teens/twins anywhere is bloody expensive!

    1. Ha Ha the beach house sounds way up my alley!! So craving that lately. Wow you have had some experiences.. living in Pakistan and travelling with twins. And you are still perfectly sane? 🙂 Craig and I have stopped at two kids because we know how expensive travel will get 🙂 Best way to travel still then is to explore your own backyard. We have loved doing this this past year. I still feel like I’m travelling, yet it’s cheaper and easier.

      Thank you for sharing Seana!

  17. Fortunately, our toddler years are far behind us (my girls are 16 and 9) but I do remember the difficulties that you have listed. The good news is that the toddler years pass in the blink of an eye. The bad news is that traveling with a teenage girl may make you wish you had toddlers again! 😉

    1. Oh no, and i am going to have 2 headstrong teenagers at that. I might go and hide in a cave or something!! YEs- they do go by so fast so I don’t want to wish them away too much.

  18. Overall–toddlers aren’t terrible to travel with. Toddlers are just wonderfully “terrible” in general, don’t you think? Whether the child is at home, or traveling abroad…a toddler simply requires more energy and resources than a 5 or 7 year old! Staying at home won’t solve that problem. But the stresses of fast travel accelerate the frustration if you don’t lower your expectations. We’ve slowed down dramatically—not to mention we’ve also upped our previous budget standards—as accommodations and conveniences are a must when traveling comfortably with kids! We have 3 (7 years, 5 years, and a very active 2 1/2 year old boy).

    I love your recent post about the reality of traveling and how your travel style has changed with children and a business (right there with you!). We’re getting more tired, too. Kids and a biz and traveling is like a giant balancing act. In general–I think our expectations just have to change, and it’s hard not to compare pre-biz/pre-kids traveling with post-kids traveling. They’re just simply different!

    1. Brilliant comment! Judging by my day with the kids today, terrible toddler years are not restricted to travel!!! Travel does accelerate it though, especially when trying to manage a business on top. I think coming to terms with travel being so different to what you were used to as well is completely mind bending.

  19. Caz, I was also thinking about how difficult it is to get things done in a hotel room. If we are all in the same room then we have a REALLY hard time getting work for the biz done (which would often be done at night while kids are sleeping…but how do you do that when they’re in the room TRYING to sleep?!). 2 rooms is a lifesaver (which means house rentals and longer stays), and many more “slow” days where we do almost nothing (except work online and let the kids run and around and be kids)!

    1. Oh for sure. Apartment and home stays rock!! I think they are essential for any nomadic family who have a digital business. I love the space to work and for the kids to play. I think the kids really need to have that home taste at times too.
      The tapping on the keyboard just unsettles them. I like to get up early and work, but it rarely happens if we are in a hotel room, they inevitably arise with me.

  20. Wow. A press trip with an active toddler? That sounds like the absolute reverse of a holiday.

    Thanks for being honest about this. Much appreciated…

      1. We took our little one to India as baby for a month and we stayed put in one location – he was 13months old – the hardest ever…no sleep – all routines out…
        I do think that if you were to travel and work at the same time with very young children it would be very challenging. We spent nearly 5 months in Europe with a 5 year old and 8 year old and ironically the youngest coped much better – we used a mix of hotels and family visits
        The easiest times where when we were with other families and children around kept the pressure off mum and dad to entertain all the time.
        They travelled in Europe like little champs and wish I appreciated it more at the time….but ultimately it is what works best for each family that makes for great travel……

        1. We are always talking about how we’d love to travel with other families so the kiddies can all play and the parents can relax more. It’s hard work entertaining all the time. India with a baby I would imagine as being awful.

  21. Hi to you both. I discovered you on Pinterest. My husband to had a read of your blogs and he came across this one , and couldn’t believe how spot on it was for us.
    We’ve only done a couple of Australian flights with our 8yr old and toddler (then 18mths old) and they were exhausting! We could relate to the balcony issue, but opted out of the boat trip out on the reef. Our youngest is also much wilder than our first, who was no problem at 3.5yrs old on a trip to Thailand. Thank you for your honesty, it made us feel “normal”.

    1. Hi Maddy! Thanks for following us over from Pinterest.

      I love to be able to share how normal it really is to have children who are a challenge. I find myself often staring at other parents in public who are having difficulty with their children, not to judge, but to witness that it is totally normal and they sound like me. Too often we feel alone in this job, but really we aren’t.

      I always try to give them an encouraging and understanding smile too.

      I swear if Savannah was our first we may have stopped!! She’s adorable but so full on

  22. This was good news and bad news for me. Bad news is, my kid just turned one and he has definitely gotten much harder to handle. He used to be able to actually sit still. Good news, if this is the hardest age for travel, I think I can hack it. He’s just a little explorer too. I’m a bit scared now to try to fly to all the Pacific islands though. I can’t imagine trying to keep him still for more than two hours at a time.

    1. Yep! As you said you can handle it. It will be a challenge, but you’ll get through it. The good thing about the Pacific Islands is that once you get there the locals will dote all over Ryder and so you’ll have plenty of helping hands and on the plane there’s plenty of time to walk laps of the plane!! Wear him out so he crashes. Consider an evening flight if you can and if he is a good sleeper. It was so awesome to get the night flight home from Bangkok as Savannah slept pretty much the whole way home. It was so much easier.

  23. I agree! Traveling with a toddler is like supervising an educational trip of 45 first graders. I can totally relate. even right now, going to the grocery or dining out with my toddler is a nightmare. Nevertheless, I just focus on the brighter side, that is, my kiddo often hugs and kisses me in public, proudly shouting to the whole world how he loves me. I bet this will become very rare when he reaches his teens. So, just enjoy every moment of sweetness 🙂

  24. I actually have loved travelling with our toddlers, although I haven’t had experience with any other age so perhaps that is the secret? Start with toddlers so you don’t realise it could be better to just wait?! We spent 7 weeks travelling around Asia last year with a 1 and 2 year old and loved it, and 10 weeks over Christmas in the US and Caribbean.

    I find needing a nap the most annoying thing as it does rules out some activities we want to do as we have never had much success with getting them to sleep in the pram (when we take one, we try to stick to a carrier). The amount of stuff that babies and toddlers require is definitely number 2. I am very much looking forward to our next trip to Asia which will just be me and our oldest who will then be 4. We are just going to carry on luggage which will be a nice change!

    1. Yes….! It’s very hard to leave your children at home when your child is not more then 5 years. But i think if we should plan and try some attention for children, then might be possible your tour will be successful and you can enjoy with them.

  25. Hi there!

    I am planning to travel with my son( will be 18 month) and wife . Our idea is to go to Vietnam. Do you have any tips? or do you think that it will be a nightmare?


  26. Hi,
    I came across this post while searching for experience on traveling with younger babies. I thinking about taking my 8 months old baby to South East Asia for 1 week (family visit) – and i can’t decide or figure out if that’d be too much. Would you have any thought on that? How did your younger child do on the trip?
    Thanks much!

  27. I see this is an old blog post so you might not get this message, but I wanted to share that we just got back from a two week trip to Germany from Vancouver Island Canada, with our daughter, who is a month shy of three, and it was so stressful. I would never do it again, though there were some fun moments. Her naps were all over the place and she was so exhausted and crazy and is still adjusting from jet lag. I was nodding my head to most of your post. Have you found it much easier now? I would like to travel again as I love it, but I don’t know when or if we will ever be able to travel with her again! My husband doesnt’ ever want to fly with her again.

  28. I think short and slow are keywords. Lazy travels to nearby towns or the beach are better. I trained my kids to sleep on the stroller so I kept it nearby and used it for naps. Going by car and stopping to have lunches or walks. I also trained them to use lidded cups and kept two or three at hand and washed them in the sink at the hotel. To sleep we make them little “caves” below tables or chairs and with a lot of pillows, they like to be cuddled, of course it is best if the hotel has a crib.
    Actually I had a lot more trouble traveling with them as babies because they didnt like the sand, the wind and were baddly bitten by mosquitoes and sunburnt even when we applied sunblock liberally. Also I breastfed them and here in Mexico it is not considered good manners so I had to hide a lot.
    What I didnt like about my kid around 3 was the potty training. Traveling with a potty and dirty clothes, having to clean hotel floors, its not fun. When my daughter is 3 I am waiting until she is properly trained and not the middle of it.

  29. I’m not sure about that.We traveled 6000kms in Thailand with a 1 month year old .Went even off the beaten track..Found it easy. Just rented a Hilux and off we went .Cost for 4weeks less than $1000 including rent of Hilux..

    1. Yes. I agree – babies are easy to travel with. In this post, I talk about toddlers being the worst age to travel with from when they find their legs until they settle into them.

  30. I envy you. Only am hour flight from UK to Spain. Suncream, water, swimming pool and an-about-to-walk-full-of-energy toddler. She is only 15 months. We decided our holidays will strict only to see family in the US and Brazil

  31. Brilliat article Caz. I need your help. I’m planning a trip abroad with my hubby and baby ( she will turn 2 yr in Aug’17). We will be travelling from India for around 7-8 days in any month between April-Jun. We are not able to finalize location that can be South Africa or New Zealand or an european country. Can you suggest me what option shall be the best ( comfortable as well as affordable).

    1. That’s a lot of places to choose from. I think any country in Europe will be fine. New Zealand would be great. South Africa maybe a little more challenging.

  32. haha, I agree with you. We’ve been planning to head out for quite some time now. Just got the financials all set up and are now starting a business elsewhere to be able to do the nomadic life without staying connected with our original country. (tax is 50%+ and we do not intend to go back so that felt like a dealbreaker).
    Our youngest is 3 years old and I he’s still acting like that Duracell battery bunny who can go, go, go and never stop 😛
    Its going to be fun but probably a lot to bite into.

  33. Thanks so much for this brilliant article. I have been thinking about an overseas trip when my mom turns 60 in three years time and my daughter will be 4. So I decided to check out what people have to say – personal experiences help me have a solid frame of reference when making an informed decision

  34. Hi

    I came across this blog whilst googling “travelling with young children is draining” and felt very relieved to read this. We are a family travelling around Greece and then going to Costa Rica and I am exhausted with the demands of my little one (just 2). I don’t feel I can relate or moan to my friends back home and yet I am finding this extended holiday very hard work for all the reasons you mentioned. Thank you

  35. Thank you so much for this article. I needed to hear this. I’m an avid traveller and a new mom of a 1 year old currently stuck home in Canada with -38C weather and tons of snow. All I want to do is hang out in Hawaii with my kid but my intuition was telling me that it’s not going to be like it used to be pre-baby. I’ve travelled with baby twice now when she was 8 and 10 months old and now she’s 16 months so this article has confirmed my thoughts of how it could be.

  36. We didn’t have this experience at all. Just had a 3 month work trip –
    However we travelled US Canada , UK ,Italy with our 6 yr old and 18 mth old. Wasn’t too hectic at all. It was a work trip but we are pretty routined in general so stayed a week at each place and most days we’re back at our hotel room for 12-3 for naps / down time and would then be refreshed for afternoon adventures and drinks!
    We fly with our car seats – our kids sleep in them great on the plane.
    They eat almost anything which is helpful .. but we do travel a lot so they are used to it.
    I think the key is not over doing the activities . We always found parks or gardens for them to roam and be free and picnic so it was enjoyable for all.

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