Top 5 Tips To Traveling With Kids and Enjoying it!
My daughter Hanalei was 1.5 years old when we started our Unstoppable journey and let me tell you, kids are ultra adaptable. The picture to the left was us in Nicaragua crossing the border from Costa Rica.
We had 8 bags when we started, the local guys would go GAGA or us because they knew these “American’s” would need their help. Today we travel with 1 each, and donate almost everything we own before we go to the local kids and then buy the essentials when we arrive in a new country.
Now, most parents would probably freak out with having a 2.5 yr. old little girl running around at the border of Nicaragua and create fearful energy within their kids so they would also be afraid. We decided to take the opposite route and to take a deep breath and to enjoy the whole process. And you know what? It was amazing, and so was Hanalei and the local kids she was playing with while we waited at the border.
So go out and do it, you will be so happy you did and the life lessons you learn along the way with your child will not compare to any formal education.
This is part of a video series we shoot each day with Hanalei on the way to school. We call it “Wisdom of The Day With Hanalei” where she shares her wisdom and experiences as a traveling child.
Below are my top tips for traveling with kids.
1. Kids are Adaptable
We’ve travelled across borders, walking the border from Costa Rica into Nicaragua with Hanalei when she was only 2 years old, flown 22 hours when she was 6 weeks old, hiked Machu Picchu when she was 3, lived in Bali when she was 2 and have traveled on planes, trains, busses, bikes and on foot. It was crazy, but kids are so adaptable and they love the adventure!
2. Get a Teddy Bear
The best way to travel with a young child is to get a big, huge, fluffy teddy bear. There’s a reason why (not just so they can cuddle it!). It’s because in the airplanes it can be really hard and rigid, and kids always want something comfortable to sleep on, and they’re too small. So the fluffy teddy bear becomes their booster seat, their protection and their bed inside the airplane.
Hanalei started going to different cultured schools from the age of 2. Her first school was in Bali, Indonesia. Putting kids into an environment of learning a language is the best thing you can do, so when we get to a country we start communicating with the people we meet. We talk to other expats with children, and find out where they are sending their kids to school. The best thing that I could have ever done was putting Hanalei into a school that teaches Bahasa (an Indonesian language) and also a school that teaches Portuguese. She already had a foundation in Spanish and I was a little nervous as Portuguese is completely different, but she was unbelievable. She never once had an issue with learning the language. So get them a foundation of the language you are going to be around for at least a year. She is now almost fluent in spanish and attends an expatriate school here on a little island in Panama called Tangerine Education Center.
4. Finding a Home
With kids you want to look at where the homes are located. When we get to a new city we book a nice hotel in the area we want to live in for about 3 days, so that we can look around for accommodation. I typically use vrbo.com and I start asking them questions about a month in advance, letting them know I have a child and discovering whether the house is suitable for my daughter. For example if you have a young child you might need to make sure the pool is blocked off, or if its an older child you might want to check there is a space that they can have fun in. Sometimes you need to be close to a stores because kids often need things in the middle of the night!
5. Let Go and BE UNSTOPPABLE
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Take your kids traveling and live Unstoppable!
The Unstoppable Family
Wondering how we have travelled the world for the last 6 years without a JOB living like a Freedom-Preneur?
This site will explain how we do it.. http://Unstoppable-formula.com