Hilarye Fuller is a professional vacationer (I want her job) and successful online journalist. Her blog, Dotting the Map, has been featured in USA Today and other travel publications. We are so pleased that she agreed to this interview about traveling with children.
What’s the biggest surprise about traveling with children?
The surprise is how much they actually enjoy it and remember it! A lot of times I hear parents opting out of travel with small children because they don’t want to waste the money on something they won’t remember. Which is understandable but my four-year-old brings up trips we took with her when she was two-years-old.
What would consider the biggest adventure that you’ve ever taken as a family or individual?
Our biggest adventure as a family was taking our, at the time, two-year-old and five-month-old cross country on a red-eye flight and to New York City. That was a hard trip but we had a lot of fun moments. Individually, going to Tokyo, Japan was my biggest adventure. I was fascinated with the culture, the sights, and most definitely the food.
What are the top 5 must-do’s when traveling with children?
1. Take a deep breath.
2. Do your research and set obtainable goals.
3. Bring lots of snacks (more than you think you need).
4. Plan, plan, plan but also be prepared to shift gears at any moment.
5. Let go and enjoy it. Even the hard times.
How do you keep busy little ones entertained and out of trouble when traveling?
At this point, they know the drill. We have clear expectations for them while we travel and they understand that. That being said meltdowns happen so plan with things to do like books, coloring books, a new toy from the dollar store, lots of snack and an occasional movie or game on the iPad.
Anything special to keep in mind when traveling during the holidays?
If at all possible avoid peak holiday travel and try to travel a couple days early. We have been stuck in airports for 10-plus hours due to bad weather and have had baggage lost.
Favorite vacation spot to date?
Surprisingly we all really enjoyed Whistler, Canada. It was beautiful and there was so much to do from museums, bike trails, lakes, delicious restaurants, waterfalls, etc. We had so much fun just relaxing and enjoying each other’s company.
Thanks Hilarye! Follow Hilarye’s travel moments at Dotting the Map and don’t forget to take the kiddoes along for the next big travel adventure.