If you have a desire to get out and see the world with your family, the fact that you have young children is no reason to wait. While it’s true that traveling to Jamaica with kids can add certain challenges that aren’t present when you travel alone with your spouse, you’ll find that going on a trip abroad with your children also offers some incredible benefits that far outweigh the challenges. You’ll love having the opportunity to see the world through your kids’ eyes, pausing to appreciate the things that you might otherwise have overlooked. Most of all, though, traveling with your children will leave your entire family with memories that you’ll treasure for the rest of your lives.
Traveling with children to a place like Jamaica does involve a few special considerations that you might not have to worry about if you were traveling on your own, and those are the things that we’ll discuss in this article. Let’s make sure that your trip is as great as it can be. If you’re traveling to Jamaica with children, these five pieces of advice can help to ensure that your vacation will be perfect.
Choose the Right Lodgings
Jamaica is a nation full of stunning beauty. While you’re there, your kids will want to spend plenty of time running around, playing and exploring. A hotel, however, isn’t always the most conducive environment for those activities.
- With so many other people around, you have to keep an eye on your kids while they play. While they’re having fun, it’s going to be difficult for you to relax.
- A hotel offers few opportunities for kids to get rowdy without disturbing other guests. If they happen to get a little loud – which is very likely to happen on vacation – it’s going to increase your stress level.
- Activities like lawn toys are always in use. Your children might never get a chance to play with the things that look the most fun.
- It can be hard to find a good spot by the pool – and many hotel pools are for adults only.
If you’re traveling to Jamaica with children, a Caribbean villa can offer accommodations far superior to what you’d get at a hotel. The amenities are always available and ready to use, and your children can feel free to run around and be as noisy as they like.
Discuss the Trip as a Family and Set Expectations
Planning a vacation isn’t just a matter of deciding where you’re going to go; you also need to decide what you’re going to do when you get there. Unless your children are very young, it’s likely that they’ll have some thoughts about the activities that sound most fun to them – so you should take the time to discuss the trip as a family and set everyone’s expectations to make sure that the entire family is on the same page. During your discussions, talk about the options that are available and gather feedback from everyone in the family. Taking the time to listen to your kids’ desires and concerns makes them feel valued and reminds them that it’s their vacation, too.
When you’re setting an activity schedule for your vacation, it’s a good idea to leave plenty of room for flexibility and to have a few backup activities in mind. That way, you won’t have to worry about your plans being completely derailed by poor weather or an unexpected closure.
Pack Plenty of Snacks
Younger children sometimes have difficulty regulating their emotions, and that’s especially likely to be the case when a child is hungry or tired. One reason why it’s wise to leave plenty of flexibility in your vacation schedule is to ensure that your children have ample time to relax and recharge their batteries. Hunger, however, is a problem that you can only resolve if you have food available – so pack plenty of snacks when you travel to Jamaica. Moods can quickly turn sour if that restaurant you’ve been dying to eat at only has late reservations available. Bringing snacks can also help you save a little money by avoiding overpriced in-flight fare during the trip to Jamaica.
An added benefit of bringing snacks is that eating those snacks will leave plenty of room in your luggage for all of the souvenirs you’re certain to buy during your trip.
Expect Everything to Take Longer
Making sure that your vacation schedule has plenty of built-in flexibility isn’t just a matter of giving yourself a buffer in case an attraction is closed or your kids need a nap; it’s also a necessity because you can expect everything to take a little longer when you travel with children. There’s no point in trying to corral your family from one activity to the next when your kids are tired and in need of downtime because no one is going to have fun when the entire family is feeling moody and on edge.
When you’re viewing the local attractions, it’s likely that your children will want to pause and look more closely at things that might not interest you quite as much, and it’s important for you to give them the opportunity to explore. Remember that having a great vacation isn’t a matter of maximizing how efficiently you use your time; it’s about getting the maximum possible enjoyment in the time you have. Budget extra time for everything to ensure that no one will feel rushed.
Always Know Who’s in Charge of the Kids
Nothing could possibly be more frightening during a vacation than looking over your shoulder and seeing that your kids aren’t there. The way to prevent that from happening is by making sure that both parents always know who is in charge of the children. There will be moments when one of you is distracted ordering snacks, buying tickets, making a reservation, negotiating for souvenirs or asking for directions. When one parent does that, the other parent needs to be watching the children. Make sure that you and your spouse never allow yourselves to become distracted simultaneously – and if that’s unavoidable, then your children should be holding your hands so they can’t wander off.