Traveling with children

It’s fascinating to know that compared to adults, children learn new things faster! From learning to speak a new language to playing a musical instrument, children are quick to learn from you, from their teachers as well as from their environment. In fact, according to an article in Gottesman Libraries of Teachers College Columbia University, a child’s prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain where memories are stored, undergoes rapid development that enables the child to “soak” up new knowledge easily1.

With that in mind, parents should be mindful of how to guide children in their early years to fully develop their physical, mental, social, and emotional faculties. And the perfect way of sending all these aspects of learning into overdrive is travelling with kids.

Travelling may be challenging right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While hotels and resorts take stringent safety measures, and there are smart solutions such as glamping, the risks are real. And it’s up to you to weigh the risks against the benefits and choose whether to travel now or later. But one thing is clear: there is nothing like travelling to fuel a learning boom in your child.

Take note of these amazing benefits travelling can do for your child:

  1. Travelling helps develop your child’s motor skills. Exposing your child to the wonders of the world also does wonders for their physical health! From soaking up vitamin D from sunshine2 to powering up their developing muscles through active play3, physical development and travel go hand-in-hand.
    When travelling with kids, try to include engaging and fun activities in your itinerary for your whole family to enjoy. These can be as simple as biking through a park with a nice view or as challenging as hiking a mountain. 
  2. New experiences can nurture your child’s mind on a deeper level.
    There are some who say that taking a child on a trip is a waste, since they often won’t even remember going. But, in reality, children learn a great deal by travelling to new places.
    By immersing them in diverse cultures, history, and languages, it opens up their mind to learning. And this one-of-a-kind journey is not something they can experience by viewing flashcards in a classroom.
    In addition, travelling with kids can help boost their creativity and imagination. It also helps reduce their stress and anxiety levels4.
  3. Travelling with kids can strengthen the family’s bond and improve your child’s social skills.
    Molding your child’s social skills is part of teaching them how to be human. Through socialization, a child learns how to comprehend and express their thoughts, empathize, build relationships, and more5
    This task may be a bit daunting for parents, but you are not alone in this journey of developing your child’s skills. And when you travel, everyone can play the role of teacher to your child -- from tour guides to new acquaintances. By planning out a family vacation, you can help your child meet lots of different and interesting people. This will teach them to treat these folks with the same respect they have been taught to show the adults in their regular day-to-day lives (eg: daycare teachers)6
  4. Going on regular family vacations can help children control their emotions.
    We all know it’s true: travelling with kids never goes according to plan. From being stuck in hours-long traffic to an unexpected rainshower on the day the family visits your child’s favorite theme park, the only thing certain is that nothing is certain! Anything can go wrong, and your child sometimes may not accept their circumstances. 
    By exposing children to the spontaneity of adventure, such experiences can teach them to be more patient and receptive to change. To help your child adjust, you can plan out a loose routine beforehand, or bring their favorite stuffed toy to help them feel comforted7.  

How should I plan our next family trip?

Even once the COVID-19 situation improves, your family should be cautious when going out in the new normal. Here are a few things you can do to make sure your family stays healthy for your trip:

  • Encourage your family to always practice good hygiene.
  • Ensure that your family is updated on their vaccines.
  • Help strengthen their immunity through the right nutrition.
  • Do detailed research about your family’s destination. Be aware of the existing health protocols in place.

Travelling with kids can make your journey challenging, yet it is always delightfully enriching for you and your entire family.

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1 Do Kids Learn Faster than Adults? (2014). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from:
2 6 reasons children need to play outside. (2018). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from:
3 Top 5 benefits of children playing outside. (2018). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from:
4 Why Kids Need To Spend Time In Nature. (n.d.). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from:
5 Social Skills. (n.d.). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from:
6 4 Reasons To Socialize Your Kids Young. (n.d.). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from:
7 Tips for healthy travel with children. (2017). Retrieved October 1, 2020 from: