HKQ Kids

Safe and Stress-Free Holiday Traveling

You may find yourself doing a bit of extra traveling to visit relatives or you may even go on vacation during winter break. The wintry conditions around this time of year can make driving and traveling less safe than usual. Whether you’re taking a road trip to visit your relatives or booking flights for far-off destinations, here are a few tips to keep your holiday traveling smooth sailing.

Driving

  • First and foremost, take extra caution when driving in icy or snowy conditions, especially with your children. Remember that braking takes longer on icy roads, so drive a bit slower than normally. In addition, make the following preparations and keep these factors in mind:
    • Clean any snow/ice off your car before leaving to prevent your vision getting obstructed while driving.
    • Check your tires frequently throughout the season, and make sure they’re inflated appropriately.
    • In the case of an emergency, make sure your phone is fully charged, and bring a charger if possible. Of course, under no circumstances should you be looking at your phone while driving.
    • Likewise, in the event your car is having issues and you’re stuck in place, have an emergency kit: clothing and blankets to keep warm, non-perishable food, and flashlights and/or flares.
      Avoid using cruise control when driving on icy/slippery surfaces.
  • If you’re taking a longer road trip, have some entertainment for the kids ready to go. Luckily, you’ve got a ton of options these days. An iPad with a couple of new games installed can go a long way in staving off boredom, but if you want to keep screen time to a minimum, there’s always coloring books or road trip classics like 20 questions or the license plate game.
  • Bring snacks! A long trip can only feel longer with a car full of hungry kids. Sliced fruit, granola bars, juice boxes, etc. are all good to keep on hand.
  • Take breaks and make stops along the way. If you’re on a longer car ride, you can keep any backseat tension to a minimum by making frequent stops for fresh air, stretching your legs, and bathroom breaks. Check for any points of interest on your route before leaving and consider making a pit stop along the way.

Flying

  • Budget your time; in fact, assume everything will take a bit longer than it’s supposed to. It’s always a good idea to get to the airport early; give yourself some wiggle room in the event of traffic or any other unexpected hiccups that could throw off your schedule and make you late.
  • Dress in layers. The temperature is bound to fluctuate on travel day, especially if you’re crossing time zones to somewhere much warmer or colder. Likewise, the plane might be chilly, so it’s better to have options instead of one set of clothing that you’re stuck in all day. Dress comfortably, too!
  • We’ve all been there: whether you’re a parent or a nearby passenger, you’ve shared a flight with an unhappy young child. It’s not a foolproof solution, but you can make it easier on yourself and your kids by trying to plan flights for when your kids would normally be going to sleep.
  • Another source of irritation for kids during flights is the pressure change when reaching high altitudes, causing that unpleasant sensation in the ears. If they’re old enough, bring along some gum or lollipops -- they cause the mouth to produce more saliva, and the extra swallowing can help prevent ear blockage. Babies can be given pacifiers or bottles for a similar effect.

Wherever your travels may take you this holiday season, everyone at HKQ Kids hopes your journey is fun and safe!

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