And away we go. Traveling with a toddler can be a daunting experience. Just because it can be both challenging and daunting doesn’t mean you should limit your travel plans or even rule out traveling altogether! My son lives in Ottawa, so we do a lot of traveling back and forth with our 17-month-old. Ottawa is about a three-hour drive from where we live. Here are some tips I use to make my trip with her a little bit more enjoyable.
- Schedule small pit stops to stretch and allow your toddler to run. Those on routes along the highway have become my friend.
- If possible, consider starting your travel around your toddler’s nap time. When we can do this we have two hours quit time.
- A road trip is not a road trip without snacks. I pack it all: Cheerios, puffs, cookies, apple juice etc.
- Increase your patience and tolerance levels. I don’t know about your toddler, but mine hates to be in her car seat.
- Pack some activities that both you and your toddler can enjoy. Purchase a new toy and save it for your trip.
We recently drove to Kingston, which is only one hour drive, but our toddler decided to cry for a good portion of that drive. I gave her the Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes to entertain her, but sadly that only lasted for ten min- before she chucked it across to the other seat. The only time she was not crying was when she was eating a cookie. Finally, we stopped on the route and I let her walk around. That did it. She was a happy camper after that.
Nonetheless, Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes is worth mentioning as it is a great take-along toy and it is small enough to pop in your purse. This baby’s version of an “MP3 player” plays classic music and has colorful lights that dance across the screen. The switch on top has two volume settings (high/low) and also turns the unit off. It’s not extremely loud, so it’s not annoying to parents. Recommended for infants 3 months and up I think the toy is more suited for those under one. In my opinion, Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes is a pretty basic toy for a 17-month-old, which is why she lost interest so quickly. When shopping for toys ensure you buy age-appropriate toys.
What are your thoughts and experience with toddlers and traveling?