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9 Tips for Travelling Safely With your Toddler

StickyFingersTravel.com, the online travel guide for parents who want to travel with their children, offers some top tips for travelling with your toddler.

Toddler travel tips

  1. When packing your travel documents, bring two recent photos of your children with you (one in your bag and one with your travel documents). This way if you get separated from your child you can quickly show people what they look like.
  2. Explain to children old enough to understand that they should stand still if they get lost, and dress them in at least one bright article of clothing when travelling so that they can be easily spotted.
  3. When they are old enough, make sure they know their full name and address. Regularly establish safe ‘meeting places’ if you are at a busy event. If they can remember your phone number that is great (this may not work if they are very upset when lost). Where possible use wrist bands if they are available or put a piece of paper in their pocket with all your numbers on it, including the county code.
  4. If you are considering using a kids’ club while on holidays, you should check carefully both before you go and while on-site that standards are as you would expect, that the club is properly run and that you are happy with all of the arrangements. Ask whether all child carers are fully trained and qualified and that the club is approved for the age of your child. Check that there are appropriate levels of staff qualification, police checks, hygiene, security and safety. Check carefully the sign in and out arrangements and the arrangements for identifying children, which should include name badges at the very least.
  5. Never leave young children alone at night. There are not only the risks of someone entering the property (very rare), but the issue of dangers such as a fire or the child going wandering or deciding to play with the electric sockets, have a bath or go out on to the balcony or by the pool area. Babysitting is available in most properties. Dining where kids may meet other kids or where there may be entertainment gives you a chance to have a break and spend some time together while the kids are happy.
  6. Be very aware of the dangers of water and never assume that a lifeguard or someone else will be as good at looking after your own child as you. Set some ground rules with the kids as to what they can and cannot do in the pool or at the beach depending on their ability, and check staff ratios if a kids club may involve some water-based activities.
  7. Be responsible when it comes to alcohol if the kids are out with you in the evening, and take turns in having a few drinks if necessary. One adult should always be sober enough to properly and appropriately supervise the children.
  8. On arrival, childproof your accommodation before you unpack your own things. Remove all the lovely things you used to love as traveller before kids such as chocolates and milk cartons which can be messy missiles. If your child is very young, crawl around to seek out potential hazards. Bring tape to cover electrical sockets (as your local domestic socket covers will not work) and tie up loose wires. Remove spare phones from the connection unless you want a hefty phone bill. Check doors that might otherwise trap small fingers and secure them with a magazine or something else to keep them in place. Check everywhere for hot water and watch in particular bidets which are a favourite of the under-threes as they are very accessible.
  9. Check for glass and any other dangers and put breakable furniture out of reach or ask for it to be removed. Check all windows to ensure they are locked and secure, especially if you are not at ground level. Balconies can also pose a danger so make sure they cannot be accessed and that older kids that can reach the doors understand that they should not go on the balcony without close adult supervision.
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