Parenting solo? Whether you’re raising your little superstar on your own or sharing time with them on different schedules as a co-parent, you’re taking on one of the most challenging, albeit rewarding roles in life.
Those hourly wakeup calls for a nappy change or a bottle – or even just an impromptu calming cuddle – can make ‘adulting’ tough during the day when you need to work. If your little one is with you in the daylight hours, juggling work and playtime can be tiring. As they get older, their needs change, but their demands on your time, love – and patience – never will.
Despite the challenges, creating opportunities to build amazing memories with your children is vital. Part of that is giving them the opportunity to experience new things, and there are few more valuable eye-opening and bonding experiences than travel. As daunting as the prospect of a long-haul flight or a road trip across the country coupled with the fact that you’ll be even more short-handed away from your support system – there are, thankfully, plenty of options to help you get some down time, while creating amazing memories with the kids.
After the 2020 we’ve all had so far, spending quality time with your little one may be just what the doctor ordered! Whether you’re already planning your December break or family vacation for 2021, here are some tips to get you going.
Share the Adventure
Making memories on a holiday isn’t about how much you spend – it’s about how you share experiences with your little ones. Broaden your horizons as a family by trying out new foods, appreciate a new world by visiting important historical and cultural sites or expand your minds by learning a new language.
Watching a young mind expand before your eyes as a new world opens up to them, is one of the most rewarding things you’ll experience as a parent. Whether you’re close to home or in a foreign place, each experience will create a milestone memory. Every parent would love to kindle the curiosity of their children in exciting new ways – and on a trip, every experience is a bright new spark.
Travelling with small kids – especially single-handed – doesn’t have to be a scary experience. Planning travel time around their regular naptimes can help settle them, as can packing a few familiar and favourite toys or a tablet pre-loaded with their favourite shows, for the elder ones.
If you’re flying, taking the time to carefully pick the airline you choose to fly with, depending on how they cater to children, can make all the difference on your trip. Also good to remember is that Flight Attendants have seen it all before and may have a trick or two up their sleeves to assist with your children. So don’t be afraid to ask for help if you’re at your wits’ end – or even if you just need a moment to yourself, to go to the bathroom.
Be financially savvy
Travel costs can add up and, in an even more price-conscious market post lockdown, one must ensure bang for their buck and value for their hard-earned cash. Keep an eye out for last minute offers that often have great savings or plan your holiday in advance to get the best rates on hotels and airfares. All-Inclusive holiday resorts like Club Med have amazing deals where children under 12 years of age also stay free at their Mauritius resorts, and those under 6 years stay free at their other sun resorts!
Catering for kids
As much as it’s tempting to pack as much of your kid’s familiar toys and items as possible, it can make getting around on your own rather frustrating. Modern child-friendly holiday resorts with Club Med offer all sorts of tiny creature comforts, from bottle warmers to prams and even child safety seats on airport transfers. Their world-renowned Kids’ Clubs cater for children from 4 months to 17 years, all accommodated in separate categories so your kids can have age appropriate fun with their peers! At Baby Club Med® (4-23 months) and Petit Club Med® (ages 2-4) the younger ones are given the chance to explore and let their imagination run wild at their own pace in fun colourful themed play spaces.
Look after YOU
Taking some time out for a break from something as intense as raising a child on your own is important for your physical and mental wellbeing. Whether you are a parent raising kids on their own or flying solo due to your significant other being unable to join you on a holiday – you deserve a holiday that offers you much-needed time to yourself – even more so after the months long lockdown. And the kids probably wouldn’t mind experiencing some crazy adventures and making new friends, either!
One of the most agonising experiences in the world is arriving back from a holiday, more tired than before you left – so be sure to pick a place that you know will give you an opportunity to relax, help cater for your children’s needs and go the extra mile to make your trip as easy as possible.