Travel. Oh, those glory days pre-children, when your biggest drama was whether you’d splurge on premium economy or save the cash for a quick trip to that Parisian department store. Should we all just collectively “lol” right now? Simply muttering the words “customs queues” can be enough for most parents to put their suitcases into storage until retirement...
However, if you’re feeling the itch, or simply want to expose your children to life outside of the daycare run, it is possible. In fact, Zoie Kingsbery Coe says it’s not just possible, but totally worth it. As the founder of Kid & Coe, she made it her mission to create family-friendly holiday stays that are a world away from those mediocre beach resorts whose key feature is a complimentary kids’ club. Kid & Coe curates the very best in private family homes, vacation rentals, agency partners and hotels, that are “kid-tested and parent-approved.” At all of their hundreds of properties worldwide, you’ll arrive to books and toys, cribs and highchairs and family amenities that make travelling with children a breeze. Unsurprisingly, Zoie is an expert in travelling with children, and so we grilled her on her top tips for surviving – and actually enjoying – your next trip with your children, so you’ll experience so much more than “same shit, different location.” And so will your children. Take it away, Zoie. Go to www.kidandcoe.com
Tell us … Travel with kids – is it worth it?!
Travelling with kids is tricky, but the alternative is you don’t go anywhere, which is no alternative at all! It’s a little like childbirth – the actual journey is painful, but you seem to forget that part and do it again! I 100% think it’s worth it though – I always remind myself that we are ‘making memories’ and the exposure to the greater world around them that travel brings is worth a few hours of grimacing on an airplane. I think it’s important that kids learn to adapt to change and nothing helps serve that more than travel.
What do you think is the best age for children to experience travel?
I think for parents, travelling with young babies is ideal. We had some of our best trips when my son was 1 – they’re super mobile, they’re still napping, they’re quick to acclimate. We had some of our best lunches scheduled around our little one’s nap schedule on trips. Travelling with school-age children is also a joy – from about four years old they’re so open and curious. There is such great programming now for young children also – museums offering tours for kids, theatre for young viewers, families are just becoming increasingly mobile and I feel there is more opportunity to discover and enrich than ever before.
Are there any ages where you’ve found it particularly difficult to travel with kids?
Crawling babies and young toddlers on a plane can be challenging, especially long haul. Travelling with toddlers is probably the trickiest. We recently took a trip to Singapore and Bali with my three children, when my baby was 1.5. She’s very active and that was challenging. I played ‘hide the goldfish’ and ‘post the sticky note’ for about 12 hours. Red wine helps, relaxing standards help – not stressing if they’re going to sleep or not helps. Just engaging with your little and having endless little tricks up your sleeve does help. I have to admit – all three of my kids have been on bottles longer than they probably should have because it was the thing that always kept them quiet on planes!