How to Survive the Holidays with Kids #Safety1st

65With the holiday season right around the corner, many families are beginning to coordinate their family travel plans to be with family.  My family and I usually go up north, to my parent’s house for the holidays and we often joke about the amount of things we need to pack for our 3+ hour drive.

According to AAA statistics from last year their were approximately 94.5 million people on traveling during the holidays, either by car, on the train, or in the skies.  94.5 million people can cause some heavy delays, which with kids in the car, I can tell you firsthand, can make for a very unpleasant journey.

Safety 1st, a company that we know and love, has come up with some helpful tips to help us fight some of those annoyances this holiday season:

1. Avoid traveling on peak days – We do this yearly.  When driving, my husband and I have made it a point to either drive at night (so that the kids will sleep) or leave the day before a busy travel day.  If you’re flying or traveling by train, however, you may save money by flying on the morning of the actual holiday.

2. Prepare the kids for your upcoming trip – Get your child/ren excited about the upcoming holiday events.  Explain who will be at any holiday parties and show photos of relatives that they will see (whom they may or may not remember).  This will ease the sensory overload that tends to come with the holiday season, making the adjustment to a new environment a bit easier for kids to handle.

3. “Are We There yet?’ – We all loathe hearing this whether it be within the first hour of the trip INAM109or after 3+ hours of sitting in traffic.  Reserve an activity bag of sorts for each child, including activity books, toys, diapers, snacks and a change of clothes.  Safety 1st actually makes an awesome car storage container which we keep stocked with all of these items for the kids.  If your child has a tablet, pre-load some new games for their entertainment.  Safety 1st also has a Car Door Sanitation Station that can hold wipes and hand sanitizer within easy reach for any spills that you may encounter.

4. Car seats – If flying, make sure your car seat is FAA certified.  If it isn’t clearly labeled, contact the manufacturer to confirm.  Parents with older children can use the Safety 1st Boost-A-Pack which doubles as a survival kit.  Its FAA certified and will easily fit in an overhead compartment.

If driving, please make sure your car seats are installed correctly.  If it’s been a while, or if it feels a bit loose, it is recommended that you check your car seat with a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician before your trip.  Safercar.gov is a wonderful resource and our very own Suzanne Chan is a CPST now too!

5. Dont forget to prepare the guest room! – If you are heading somewhere where the kids will be staying over, you can set up a play Yard or pack n Play during the trip which can double as a sleeping area for your little one.  Whether it be for a nap or a bed, putting your child in a pack and play before your trip will help with the transition to a new sleeping environment while you’re away.

The holiday season can easily become very stressful.  With good preparation, and travel plans in place (down to the details), you’ll have one less thing to worry about, making this holiday season nothing but pleasant and enjoyable for everyone in your family.  Together with Safety 1st, we wish you a safe,  happy and healthy holiday season.