People believe a traveling family has it rough, because traveling with kids gets a bad reputation. They are believed to be too demanding, very loud, never interested… The list goes on. It never seizes to amaze me how many people give us the look with the head slightly tilted to one side, conveying how very sorry they are for us to travel with our kids. And I stopped trying to convince them that it’s actually fun. We’re good as long, as the look is not accompanied with any of these questions:
- »Can you keep it down? «
We would, if we could. Besides complaining about the noise kids make is so cliché, why not start criticizing the adults who try to hog your arm rest, snore too loudly, or take off shoes on long flights… I am done apologizing for my kids’ behavior, which is basically frowned upon solely because they are kids.
- »Don’t you wish you were here alone? «
Yes, as a matter of fact I do. I wish I was here without people like you. While true that by taking a trip alone you could see a lot more, you’d miss out on so much fun; getting to know the locals by spending time at the playground, slowing down to actually enjoy the sights and relaxing in the parks.
- »How do you do it? «
I can see that just uttering the question makes you physically exhausted. It takes too much effort for you to comprehend it; you can barely form a question, let alone listen to my answer. So, don’t be surprise to see me shrug my shoulders and smile.
- »Why do you bother? «
The question is usually accompanied with the fact that kids don’t remember anything anyway. Well, they do, they remember the really good stuff and they remind you of it, when you least expect it. But even if they didn’t, we like to travel because that’s our family’s time for one another with no distractions.
- »Why don’t our kids like to travel? «
There are not many kids who really dislike moving around, discovering new things and trying out new stuff. I find the problem generally lies with parents, who either don’t want to travel or complicate to the point it’s not fun for anyone.
- »Don’t you think you are overdoing it? «
My favorite question. It usually isn’t asked so upfront, more in terms how do the kids handle it. Even though it shouldn’t need answering, here it is: no. We do everything to make the travels suitable and exciting for all of us.
- »How do you pack it all? «
I don’t. It takes time, I admit, but with enough trips you realize there is no all. You pack the essentials and hope for the best. And then deal with whatever comes your way.
- »How do you pick the right destination? «
Relax. There is no right in general and traveling with kids doesn’t mean sticking to kid friendly resorts and theme parks. There is a whole array of places suitable for our kids to explore that we want to visit as well. And then it’s all about planning, finding things we all will enjoy.
- »How can you afford it? «
Traveling with kids doesn’t need to be expensive. Now days there are plenty of options that help make a family holiday affordable. But it takes planning and saving and skipping on other things. You just have to believe it’s worth it.
- »Now you need another vacation? «
We are always up for more vacation. Still we make sure that we make the most of the ones we get, even though we are traveling with kids.