I wondered whether to write or not write about it. All the same, our experience is specific, and in vain we do not want to frighten people who have doubts and are thinking about whether they should go somewhere with a child or not. On the other hand, I see that not only parents of special children, but also parents of ordinary children do not often travel somewhere, so I will share our little experience of how we traveled to Gelendzhik by car from Moscow. Just recently, our friends wrote about how they went to the south and told how everything turned out to be easy, and that there are too many stereotypes regarding traveling with children. In principle, it is all true, but not for everyone 🙂
The content of the article
- one Is it worth traveling with a child
- 2 Tips for traveling with your child
- 3 Personal experience with a child who sleeps little
Is it worth traveling with a child
First of all, the trip should be worth it. It is better to go somewhere to a very interesting or necessary place so that it is clear why all this is happening and why you spend so much energy and effort on moving. It is clear that children are different, and sometimes their presence changes almost nothing in terms of travel. It is no less clear that parents also differ in moral stability and attitude towards certain drinking. So you will have your own personal understanding of whether you should go or not, whether you like to ride with a small child or should you wait.
Despite our experience, I still want to say that for most parents, a trip with a child in a car is rather painless, there are a lot of examples among our friends. There are some nuances for which you need to prepare mentally and physically, make an amendment to the format of traveling with children and adjust for this route. In any case, you probably transport your child in a car around the city and already now you know how he behaves, and you also know his features..
It may well be that people who are too fond of comfort will not be very cool to travel with children, since the child may sleep worse than usual, become overexcited, cry and be capricious, take out the brain of everyone around. And maybe you even need to be an avid traveler, a little «turned» on trips, so as not to pay attention to all these vicissitudes. But just know, most fears are only in the head, and stereotypes were created by people who have not gone anywhere. Therefore, you need to check everything on personal experience..
Tips for traveling with your child
I will try to describe the general nuances that seem important to me and are suitable for everyone, without exception..
- The easiest way to travel is when the child is not yet crawling or when he has already begun to walk. In the first case, it will be much easier for him to be in one place (in a car seat or on his arms), and he also does not need large spaces for movement, neither in the car, nor at stops, nor at the hotel. The second case is more difficult, but it is much easier for a walking child to find a place on the road where he can move than for a crawling one. On the roadsides and on parking lots (in Russia they are terrible) there is nowhere to crawl, only if somewhere in the grass, but not all children like it. So if you have a crawling or walking child, then prepare for multiple stops..
- Even if your child sleeps well in a child seat, try not to spend all day or even a day in the car. There is an opinion that a child can sleep, but at the same time does not get enough sleep, that is, he seems to fall asleep against his will, the nervous system simply cannot stand it and turns off the body, although visually it seems that the child is just sleeping sweetly, all this can be expressed in whims , minor colds, etc. Therefore, it is definitely better to spend the night in a hotel / apartment / tent, and not go without stopping around the clock. Think about how best to adjust your child's daily routine.
- Do not chase the maximum number of attractions and places on the trip, as it was before the birth of the child. Children get overexcited quite quickly and they need to dose new impressions, and it will be difficult for you yourself. What's the point of turning a trip into a race.
- It is better to book a hotel in advance so as not to look for it later on the spot. This is easily done through RoomGuru, where you can find out the prices for each of the hotels at once in all booking systems. It turns out the largest sample of hotels, since all the booking bases are in one place, and you can also choose where it is cheaper, sometimes the price can differ by 1.5-2 times. There are also a number of devices there, but you can also search for them through another service, about it below.
- You can stay not in hotels, but in apartments through Airbnb. This is especially true for Russia, because a good apartment can be cheaper than a good hotel. And the space for the family in the apartment is much more, and it will be very easy to prepare food for the child, since there is a kitchen. On the other hand, hotels are open around the clock, there is a cafe and you don't have to cook anything at all. In any case, the choice is yours. If you are not yet familiar with the service, then be sure to read my detailed review about him, which tells about what it is, how to register correctly, how to get a $ 20 bonus, how to book accommodation, etc..
- A very useful thing in the car for the safety of children is the locking of doors and windows so that the child does not fall out of the car. Even if he never tried to open the door, it’s only a matter of time..
- If there are a lot of doubts about their strengths and the strengths of the child, then it makes sense to test on a short trip. Most often, it is the parents who find it difficult to travel with the children, and not the children. Not everyone has the moral strength to withstand all these difficulties..
What to take with you
It makes sense to think about useful things for the trip and various accessories in advance. For example, I carry with me an inverter for charging only through 220V, a couple of holders for a smartphone (it is used as a navigator and a Wifi point), a soft and safe table for a child seat (for example, this one), a toilet case with pockets on the seat, a folding bucket and mini shovel. Also, if we go camping, we take a tent, sleeping bags, mattress, flashlights and other necessary things with us. Basically, I buy everything, either in Decathlon, or I order through Aliexpress. Yes, it takes 2-4 weeks to wait with Ali, but on the other hand, there is a lot of everything for sale and very inexpensive, it will be necessary to write a list somehow, which I have already acquired for travel.
Life hack # 1 - when shopping on Aliexpress, you can get cashback up to 11% through the EPN service (they have a plug-in for the browser, an application for phones). I wrote everything in great detail in my instructions, what is it and how to use it.
Life hack number 2 - when ordering online on the Decathlon website, but through the cashback service Letyshop, there will be a return of 2.5-5% for all goods. If you are not yet in the know, then they have delivery, so you can order everything for yourself at home. By the way, there is not only Decathlon, but also a bunch of other stores..
- We were very much saved in the car by tinting, but unfortunately, we didn’t think to hang up the curtains additionally. It is desirable to have both. Because toning makes it easier for the air conditioner to work (even in modern cars with climate control, without toning it will not be very good), and the curtains can significantly dim the light in the cabin.
- It is best to take some special toys in the car for children: new or favorite ones. Moreover, it is not necessary to show everything at once, but in turn, today one, tomorrow another, and so on. This moment needs to be well thought out so that the child is somehow distracted on the road. A tablet with pre-installed children's applications and cartoons will not be superfluous..
- From motion sickness in transport for children and adults, I recommend wrist bracelets. Daria is saved only by them, she has this problem since childhood. Until recently, they did not believe, but they really work!
- If the child is selective in food, then it must be taken with him. In the morning we brewed porridge in a thermo mug, and then it was enough for two meals along with fruit / vegetable puree. And the bread went well, as a way to distract the child. We also had a gas burner just in case to be able to cook food. There is a cafe on the track, but, as a rule, they do not have an assortment for a child, and it is dumb to give such a child in an unfamiliar place. By the way, because of the food, it is with the baby (which is still on the breast) that it is easiest to ride, gave the breast and that's it..
Personal experience with a child who sleeps little
The most important conclusion that I made on this trip is that the pleasure of the trip should be in total more than the mental and physical effort expended. That is, it’s real to go, as practice has shown, but whether you want to repeat this is another question, and you don’t want to go where. In our case, anyway, we had to take the child out to sea, to fresh air and to the sun, so that he would recover from a serious illness and hospital, and at that time we could not afford a plane. Plus, we also wanted to check the Gelendzhik region for moving there, so to speak, two birds with one stone. We got somewhere roughly equal in effort and benefit with impressions, so it was totally worth it.
Knowing that our Yegor sleeps very badly (this is that he does not sleep in a car seat under any circumstances, and he can also wake up from the slightest movement or light), we immediately decided to go with at least two nights, in Voronezh (apartment in Voronezh) and near Rostov. 500 km a day is quite a normal distance that can be covered with a lot of stops. True, due to the repairs of the M4 highway, sometimes it was necessary to drive rather slowly and it took a lot of time to overcome these kilometers. Immediately I would like to say a huge thank you for a free overnight stay in Voronezh on the way back, and for a hospitable house near Rostov, where we rested for several days with good people.
On the way, we regularly stopped for two daytime sleep of Egor, rocked him, gave him an hour to sleep, and tried to drive on. As a rule, he woke up from the very first pit, of which there are innumerable on our roads. Ideally, for such trips, you need long stops for sleep (until you wake up) and a minibus, where there will be much more space in the cabin, and where he and Daria can lie down normally on the seat. In Lancer, the back seat is not suitable for this at all. And it is also desirable to have a road like the German Autobahn with many parking lots for rest.
One day there was a complete ambush, at first we could not get out of the car, because a herd of mosquitoes with long and sharp noses immediately attacked us, and when we left this cloud (after 50 kilometers), it started to rain 🙂 As a result, Yegor nevertheless passed out in the car for a short while, but the night was then terrible. Correctly say, the key to a good night's sleep is a good daytime sleep. By the way, in connection with mosquitoes / rains / sun, this idea came up - to carry a mosquito net with you (you can hang it on a tree and stand inside to rock (or you can arrange a picnic), as well as a fisherman's tent or a camping toilet (like a tent, only high and narrow) .The last two structures protect not only from mosquitoes, but also from rain and sun.Otherwise, just any quick-assembly tent from Decathlon, which just jumps out of the cover and is set up in 10 seconds. a long-term tent, and on the road for stops to take a quick-assembled structure. An umbrella for these purposes will not interfere.
In addition to the fact that Yegor does not sleep in a child seat, he also refuses to sit in it at all. Therefore, the mother was entrusted with a very responsible task to entertain the cub all the way with toys, jokes, food, and everything that comes to mind so that he was in the chair as long as possible. I recommend stocking up on this in advance. I think a tablet with games is also perfect here, in the car everything is fine. True, in our case, this did not save, and Yegor constantly broke through the line of defense and with playful hands, pulled his dad by the hair. In fact, part of the way we violated the rules for transporting children in the car and used the child seat for feeding, as well as to show the police if they stopped. Here we are so careless 🙁 But we either sit at home, or ride outside the chair. And again, thoughts came about a minibus or a home on wheels in general, it's a dream ...
Here's the truth, you stop with «distraught» a kid by the side of the road, and you have nothing to entertain him with. What is there to entertain, in general there is no escape at the side of the road, either go into the grass with garbage, or a forest with garbage, there are no parking lots.
P.S. It is important to understand that all children are different, and if someone can travel without stopping for months, this does not mean that your child will also approve of this. And vice versa, if it is difficult for someone, then it is not a fact that it will be difficult for you. Everything needs to be approached with a head, but most importantly, they are not afraid to try something and draw their own personal conclusions..
P.P.S. After a while, we were still able to teach the child to sit in a child seat, however, he still does not sleep in it. But it became much easier for us and it is safer for him. The next trip to the sea a year later was a hundred times easier. Now I am re-reading my post and I think how everything is changing.