How to Travel With Kids to Europe

How to Travel With Kids to Europe
If you're considering a trip to Europe with your kids, congratulations! There are plenty of European tourist destinations, cultural experiences, and areas of natural beauty that should appeal to kids just as much as adults. Of course, traveling with children requires plenty of patience and flexibility, but with a little advance planning there's no reason everything shouldn't go smoothly.

Instructions

Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Step 1
Keep in mind that all children, including infants, must have their own passports to travel internationally. The process of acquiring these documents can be somewhat complicated and may take several weeks in some cases, so be sure to apply plenty of time in advance.
Step 2
Consider an overnight flight, especially for small children. No one loves to sleep on an airplane, but it may be preferable to the alternative. Flights from the United States to Europe take at least six hours and often much longer, so it may be worth losing some sleep if you think the kids will be able to get some.
Step 3
Plan to rest and regroup on the day you arrive. Regardless of the time of your flight, all travelers might be suffering from jet lag, and children might be particularly prone to crankiness. Meeting everyone's needs first will help you get a fresh start on the second day of your travel in Europe.
Step 4
Pack any must-have items for the kids, including food and toiletries. While adults might plan to pick up these kinds of things while they travel, kids who are very attached to a certain type of snack, for example, may experience unnecessary stress and melt-downs if it's not available at your destination. Planning ahead in this department can save lots of headaches for everyone.
Step 5
Choose a pleasant hotel or other accommodations near the attractions you plan to see. In general, Europe is more walkable than the United States, but this can be a mixed blessing for kids and their short legs. Assume that you'll be spending more time in your hotel than you might otherwise choose, and that activities in your immediate area will be much more convenient than others.
Step 6
Involve kids in planning your activity schedule, allowing everyone to choose some interesting destinations.

Tips & Warnings

 
If your kids enjoy foreign languages, there are plenty of appropriate learning programs you can get into ahead of time. Language books and tapes can also be a great airplane activity for older kids.
 
If your kids enjoy foreign languages, there are plenty of appropriate learning programs you can get into ahead of time. Language books and tapes can also be a great airplane activity for older kids.

Article Written By Laura Gee

Laura Gee has a B.A. in history and anthropology, but now spends more time blogging and producing web content. She has worked and/or trained as an illustrator, crafter, caterer, yoga teacher, child-care provider and massage therapist, and she loves to travel when she gets a chance.

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