You can still travel the world if you have children.
Having kids is associated with a complete life change. Once you become a parent, many believe, you have to swallow your wild instincts and desires and settle down in a suburb. That’s a wonderfully fulfilling life if you want it. However, if you love to travel, that’s likely not going to change just because you have children.
Luckily, you don’t have to stop going on adventures. In fact, many families have found that extended family trips where extremely rewarding. You can test your children’s willingness to travel by having them participate in an Experience America tour. Students from across the globe are led on supervised trips in the U.S. and Canada.
Are you thinking about hitting the road with your kids? Here’s what you need to consider.
Think About Education
This a big one. Most people shy away from extended international travel with children because they’re worried about the educational costs. Pulling your child from school is a very unusual move in Western culture.
Your kids’ futures will be gilded by extended travel, not tarnished. The world is an accomplished teacher. You can decide to homeschool, enroll them in local schools abroad, follow an online curriculum, hire a tutor. There are many, many options.
In addition to the benefits of regular schooling, you kids get to learn from their environment when you’re traveling. Residing in non-English speaking countries will help them learn another language. Constant exposure to different cultures and ideas will grow their minds.
Fix Your Budget
Adhering to your budget is critical. Figure out how to finance your plan before you get started. Do you have a cushy nest egg to rely on? Will you or your partner be working remotely?
Part of your budget needs to include entertainment for the kids. It doesn’t have to be expensive. An ice cream cone in town here, a visit to the local arcade there.
Bringing your children on your travels will obviously drive your costs up but there are budget-conscious tips that you can adhere to that will lessen the strain. For instance, many traveling families recommend always preparing your own food. You can use better ingredients and you’ll get more value out of your money than if you went to restaurants.
Follow these tips for more ways to cut your budget:
- Use airline miles. Flights are expensive. Using your points to pay for your travel can save you a ton of money.
- Stay with friends. Do you have any friends or family in the area that you can stay with for a while?
- Use public transportation
Focus on the Journey
Instill your kid with a love of traveling. Make the journey just as important as the destination. That way, when you have to deal with annoying flight delays or long, uncomfortable bus rides, it won’t seem like a such a big deal. You can fend off the “are we there yet?” questions.
Learning how to deal with the minor inconveniences associated with travel will be a good experience for your kids. The ability to stay calm under pressure will benefit them for the rest of their lives.
Pick the Right Location
The world is open to you. Where do you want to go? The answer might be dictated by budget. Traveling through South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia is generally less expensive than traveling through Western Countries or East Asia.
Once you’ve worked out where you can afford to go, it’s time to figure out where you want to be. What kind of experience are you looking for?
Because your kids will be with you, it’s important that you pick somewhere safe to travel. There’s a lot of unrest in the world that your family should try to avoid.
One of the most exciting parts of world travel is the ability to meet new people. This applies to your kids too! Try to immerse yourselves in local culture as much as possible. Schedule play dates with local families. Attend large public events
It can be easy to remain cocooned in your own family, especially if you don’t speak the local language.
Traveling around the world with children is absolutely doable. The experience can turn into one of the greatest things that you ever did as a family. Kids who traveled frequently while they were young often say that the experience changed their lives.
Is your family ready to pack up and hit the road?