Many people are intimidated by the idea of traveling alone with children. Some parents, especially single parents, may not have a choice.
While the downsides are well-documented, there are ways to make the experience more enjoyable for all.
Tips for single parents who are traveling with kids
Safety. Safety is always a concern, especially when traveling. Here are some tips that could help.
- Set ground rules. Talk to your children about safety issues in a manner appropriate for their age and make sure they understand what your expectations are.
- Prepare for the worst. Talk to your children about what to do if a stranger approaches them. Work on having your child memorize your phone number as well as your first and last name and where you are staying.
Expenses. Travel is expensive. If you have the luxury of planning ahead you might be able to build up some savings using these tips.
- Get smart about credit cards. Credit card competition is fierce. Everyone is vying for your business. To win your business, many credit card companies offer perks such as miles or points that can be used toward reducing travel expenses.
- Timing. While taking children out of school is not ideal, traveling during spring break or other holiday breaks that do not occur during the summer is an automatic increase to your bottom line. Some parents choose to take advantage of these off-peak times rather than plan a big vacation in the summer when travel and accommodations always cost more.
Documentation. Single parents face additional challenges when planning out of state travel. Proving that you are within your legal rights will come down to documentation.
- Permission. Do you have an absentee ex? Is your ex-active in your children’s lives? Regardless of the situation, it is imperative that you understand your rights in the eye of the law. If your controlling document is unclear or if you are in doubt in any way, consult an experienced family law attorney who will advise you on the best course of action.
- Documents. Depending on circumstances, travel may require written and notarized consent from your children’s biological parent. Also, carry your child’s birth certificate as well as your own official ID.
For some additional helpful hints and tips, take a look at this guide for solo parent travel created by Million Mile Secrets. Traveling with children is always an adventure, but you can eliminate some of the stresses by planning ahead.