Food and Travel

Staycation Tips for Families with Young Kids

11:20 PM


travelling tips with kids


It's been more than 2 years already since we had a family getaway outside the metro. Each time we had to fly out for a vacation, we come home tired more than ever. The long travel, distance, caring for a kid, flight delays are just some of the factors that drains our energies as parents.

Since 2013, we have opted to do staycations instead. The travel time is lesser, we can also hire an Uber if we don't feel like driving to our destination, and we just chill and hang out as a family in the comfort of our hotel rooms. Read about our staycation experiences here, here, here, here, here, and here. And another here. :)

In this blog post, I'd like to share with you some tips when doing staycations with babies and young kids (1-5 yr olds).


1. Pack extras
You know the saying, "pack light when travelling?" Well it doesn't really apply when you have young kids. Things can get messy while you're on staycation so it's best to bring some extras for the kids in case of emergencies. Bring extra: clothes, nappies, snacks, drinking water, milk, swimwear (in case they decide to swim more than once), and hooded towel.


2. Don't forget the 'specials'
Kids love asking for their favorites when they are in unfamiliar territories. So don't forget to bring their special items like a favorite book, car, doll, or blanket to keep them calm.


3. Book ahead of time
I always make sure that I book ahead of time to avoid problems and minimize fees. There are several ways to book your room: phone, email, hotel website, or thru a website/app like Traveloka. Traveloka is a safe one-stop travelling solution for travelling families. It has no hidden fees and the best part is you can pay even if you don't have a credit card. Most hotels use credit cards to book so this a great solution for those who prefer not to share their credit card information.



4. Always check the inclusions for your stay.
Although it's almost standard that breakfast is included in an overnight stay, there are still some who don't offer it automatically with the rooms. So always check the inclusions including the bed size, bathroom amenities, number of pax per room, as well as mini bars. Some rooms like suites would include the mini bar as complimentary while most don't. To avoid extra unplanned expenses always check the mini bar and remind your kids not to touch them unless with permission from you.

Also if you're bringing feeding bottles, check if dishwashing liquid is included as a complimentary. Most suites do but regular rooms don't.


5. Request for a baby cot
While some hotels prepares a baby cot as complimentary, some charge a minimal amount. Before booking, check with the hotel first.

Also, request for it when you book. Cots are limited and you'll never know if you'd check-in with other families with babies too so it's best to request early on. Also, ask the hotel to set the cot up as soon as possible so that your little one can take her afternoon nap when you settle at your room.


6. Check for playrooms
Family-friendly hotels understand the need for the little ones to burn those energies. Ask the front desk if the hotel has a playroom and if there are programs scheduled for the day. Some have scheduled activities for kids on weekends.

7. Bring a rubber mat
One of the difficulties I had staycationing is making sure my baby's safe when giving her a bath. Tubs can be really slippy, with an active bub, it's a formula for an accident. Although there are rubber mats provided, they were not designed to be used in the tub. So I opted to bring a rubber mat. You know that padded rubber mat with one side blue and the other is pink? Yup, that one. It would float, yes. But when you place your baby on it, it prevents her from slipping. You may also opt for those sticker thingamajigs or an inflatable bath tub, which I don't have. :)



8. Ask for cutlery for kids
One of the worries of parents when dining out is having your kid break an expensive glass. When dining out, ask the hotel waiter if they offer cutlery for kids. Holiday Inn Makati for example has those and they even provided a sippy cup, bib, and baby high chair for my little one.



9. Plan the kids' swimming time
For me, the best time for the kids to swim is after their afternoon nap. That way, the sun's not too high, and the water in the pool is just warm enough for your kids. Previously, I wanted them to take a dip in the morning but I've noticed the freezing water of the pool even if it's an indoor one. So we've switched to an afternoon dip.



Those are a few tips I have for families with small kids. Do you have any tips to share? Let me know in the comments section!



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