Traveling with kids isn’t always easy. From the endless rounds of ‘are we there yet’ to the bouts of crying, whining or fighting (or a combination of the three), most of the struggle is a mental obstacle on the parents where you have you navigate the ups and downs before you actually get to your destination.
To help us out, we spoke with Dr. Lori Baudino, a licensed clinical psychologist. She is also the author of the new guidebook, Super Flyers: A Parent Guidebook for Airplane Travel with Children, a guidebook that, according to Baudino “promotes the positive mindset, preparation and tools necessary for flying with children from a psychological and educational perspective.” This includes insight on how to handle those moments of being upset, dealing with judgments from other passengers, how to help your kids find enjoyment in new activities, how to eliminate reliance on electronic devices and more!
Each chapter follows the steps for airplane travel beginning with the preparation mindset and ending with exiting the airplane that’s broken into acronyms, making them easy to remember and accessible while on the go. Check out more about her new book and tips when traveling with kids in our interview below:
Traveling with Kids Advice from Dr. Lori Baudino
Weekend Jaunts: Is there an ideal age to start traveling with kids?
Dr. Lori Baudino: As soon as your children have their immunization shots to travel and no other medical concerns- get your bags packed and enjoy traveling! Babies are amazing to carry around and share the world with and well they are free too!
Weekend Jaunts: What are some of your tips to ensure a stress-free flight or travel experience?
Dr. Lori Baudino: Aim, Humor, Happiness – AHH allows a stress free experience – allow 24 hours before the flight to be an ordinary day (spending time together, eating, resting) and everyone will be ready for what’s to come – not rushing or yelling or not having time for each other.
Weekend Jaunts: Tell us about your PLEASE method.
Dr. Lori Baudino: Please is all about the events that take place on the plane. How to handle any moment – the ear pressure, the need to move little bodies around, meal time, activities, sleeping, and using the toilet.
More so, it’s about communicating with children, setting them up for success by making time for them, and sticking with routines that work in environments on the ground and in the sky. This guidebook actually tells parents what to do in these daily life moments.
Weekend Jaunts: What are your thoughts on using tech when kids travel?
Dr. Lori Baudino: Super Flyers: A Parent Guidebook for Airplane Travel with Children has a section on “to screen time or not.” The main points are that if you don’t use technology you can still have a very successful time with travel. The books provides comprehensive strategies for engaging your children in solo play, cooperative play, and rest. And then if technology is your thing- just be aware of side effects. Learn about what your children are watching, set clear expectations or even a collaborative agreement, and allow time for the children to adjust back to eye contact and following directions after a lengthy time on the screen.
Weekend Jaunts: What are some other ways to get kids involved in the pre-planning (packing) stage of traveling?
Dr. Lori Baudino: The C.A.N section explains all about children packing their own carry on bag, making choices and sharing control. Your children should be involved in all the steps- front load them with information, allow them time to role play, draw, write about what’s to come, and include them in conversation. Get them acquainted with the new environment. Children are very capable of teaching us, adults, about how to have fun in waiting, and finding wonder in this travel experience.