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6 Of The Best: Family Holiday Tips by Dr. Pat Spungin

If you're one of the lucky 25% of parents who sail through family holidays without a cross word, stop reading this now!

But if you're amongst us mere mortals, child psychologist and CEO of raisingkids.co.uk, Dr Pat Spungin, has some great tips for lessening the stress and getting the most out of your all-too-short summer break.

Tips for all the family


  • Find out as much about the holiday in advance in order to anticipate and avoid flashpoints and disappointment later. Involve the children in the holiday planning and preparations so the journey becomes an adventure and everyone knows exactly what they can look forward to and expect. Have agreed meeting times like lunch and dinner where you can spend quality time with your kids talking and sharing the day's activities.

  • Find a holiday where all ages are catered for and where your kids can be occupied and do their own thing in a safe environment. Make sure that some of the activities are activities you can share, like swimming, bowling, etc.

  • Doing ordinary things in different environments can be fun such as fetching the morning croissants, getting things together for the beach bag, shopping at local markets, barbecuing and eating al fresco.

  • Friends are important to a child's enjoyment of holidays. If your child is shy or at that self-conscious age, help them make friends by making friends yourself with parents whose children are the same age. Pursuing an existing interest or trying a new hobby is a great way to meet people and make friends.

  • Strange places can upset little ones... Bring something that reminds them of home, like a blanket or a soft toy to help them settle in a strange new place. Stick to their bed-time routines. Bring some 'wind down' toys or books so that your kids can get relax before going to sleep after a busy and exciting day.

  • Don't drag the kids around doing things they don't want to do. The Eiffel Tower or local churches will be there when they are old enough to enjoy them. Have realistic expectations of the children's behaviour - they're likely to be noisy, excited and get carried away. Don't have disagreements with your partner about how to deal with them, let the parent who usually sets the rules get on with it.



  • By Dr. Pat Spungin for Raising Kids website. Raising kids website

     

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