Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Travel Tuesday: Week 11

Hello, and welcome to another edition of Travel Tuesday! This week's topic is traveling with kids. How do you feel about it? If you're a parent, how do you decide what trips your kids get to go on? If you're not yet a parent, at what age do you think you'll start taking your kids on vacation with you? As always, you are free to write about anything travel-related; don't feel obligated to answer my prompt. And, of course, don't forget to link up below!

Travel Tuesday

I'll be honest, I don't have much of value to write this week. Like I said last week, traveling with small children is just something I've always wondered about. I am aware that I am not a parent, so any observations made during this post are purely hypothetical. Perhaps when I have children of my own, I will feel differently, but I do have some pretty basic views on traveling with children.

Photo via Christopherson Business Travel
I don't really understand it when I see babies in places like Las Vegas or Six Flags. I understand babies at Las Vegas might actually live there, but many being pushed around the Strip in strollers don't. Also, no one lives at amusement parks, so I don't know why parents would take their babies somewhere where they can't even enjoy any of the rides. Like I said, I know I don't have kids, so who am I to judge? But I think it just looks like way too much work to tote a toddler who won't even remember the trip around a crowded tourist location.

Personally, I took my first international trip when I was 10, and I had a wonderful time. I think I will wait until my children are about that age before they go on any major trips. Obviously cost is a factor in this decision; I don't want to buy expensive plane tickets if my kids aren't even going to remember the trip, but convenience is also important here. It seems much easier to travel without little ones, and I doubt small children would enjoy the things I like to do on vacation, like walking tours, spending hours in museums and trying local brews at the coffee shops. Plus, I want them to actually remember their adventures! Road trips and flying to see family with my kids would be fine at any age, but beyond that I would be more selective.

Edited to add: I realize my own traveling experience as a child probably strongly influences my opinion, so here it is: My parents took my siblings and me on lots of domestic trips when we were young, and we were also frequent flyers because each set of grandparents lived in a different state than we did. However, when it came to big trips for the parentals (including Australia, Mexico and a cruise, that I can remember), they went alone and dropped us off with a friend. I actually loved this as a kid because it meant I could have a sleepover on a school night! That was a big deal. So we got to have our own little local adventure while my parents gallivanted about the world, and I think I like that idea for my own children one day.

So, veteran parent travelers, am I completely misguided here? Have your views on family travel changed since becoming a parent? How do you decide which trips the kids go on and which ones are just for you and the hubby? I'd love to know!

Next week: While we're on the subject of children, I want to know: What’s the best school field trip you ever went on as a kid?


Jessica Bucher said...

It's really not as bad as you think. Our 6 year old doesn't remember many of his earlier trips, but I know he had fun at the time. You obviously have to change the way you travel, but EVERYTHING will change when you have kids anyway, so traveling is a minor adjustment. LOL Besides, I can guarantee you at that time, you'll probably rather do something with them than take a trip doing all the old things you used to do.
I went with my husband to Vegas this past summer and we said about 20 times "We're never bringing the boys here" LOL

Elizabeth said...

My parents took me at least two major trips (think Disney World, Hawaii, Las Vegas) a year from ages 3-11. I have very few memories of any of those trips. I think you are right to say that you plan on holding off on taking big trips until your children are old enough to remember it.

The only trip I wouldn't wait for is Disney World. By the time kids are old enough to remember the trip, they're really too old to want to do all the things Disney World is really about (breakfast with characters, pictures, the parade, etc). I want to take my (hypothetical!) children when they're between 4 and 7.

Kate @ Daffodils said...

We do a little bit of both. We lvoe to go away by ourselves, but have also found many family-friendly activities in seemingly un family friendly places (Sonoma must recently). I think it is still fun to go on vacation as a family, even if the boys don't remember it, it is fun for us to watch them experience a new place!