5 Tips for Traveling with Young Twins & Multiples

Traveling with children can be both awesome and awful. Throw more than one kid in the mix and you have a recipe for some pretty interesting times. Add two more of the same age and well…you’re traveling like I do. My boys, Brody (age 3) and twins Linc and Chase (age 2) are great travelers, but even they don’t make it easy. Unless you have one adult per kid, and possibly a nanny on board—traveling with multiple young children is never easy.

Airport travel with multiples

Be sure to let your kids blow off some steam before boarding the plane or getting in the car

We could stay put and never leave the house but think of all the fun we’d miss! My children are of the toddler/preschooler variety—but some of my advice can be applied to any age child. Here are five tips for traveling with young multiples.

Plan.
Plan your little heart out. You know what it takes to get you through a 24-hour period in your house of chaos. From the time they wake up in the morning, until they crash exhausted at the end of the day, what is their routine? Think about (and write down!) the approximate times are you going to eat, nap and head back to your lodging each day. Young children feel safe in routine and you’re likely to have less meltdowns if you take the time to plan and prepare before you go. Sure you might become known as the Schedule Sargent (I am) but I also have happy Travel Kids—and wouldn’t have it any other way.

You don’t have to pack double the stuff just because you’re bringing double the kids.
Lay out what everyone is going to wear from the shoes up, in piles and by day. Determine what you have versus what you need and purchase any needed items before you go. Keep in mind, outfits can be shared and clothing can be washed.

If your car is too crammed or you don’t want to pay baggage fees to tote your own travel crib or play yard, you can rent full-size cribs and other baby necessities at many destinations from baby gear rental companies or borrow a crib from your hotel.

Travel stroller

Invest in a good travel stroller—I love my Valco Baby Snap Dual

Invest in quality travel gear.
A nice travel-friendly stroller is a must. We just traded in our big old, heavy duty stroller for a fantastic travel-friendly one in the Valco Baby Snap Dual. It rolls like a dream, I can push it one-handed and folds together with ease. When you pick up your gate-checked stuff after a flight, this stroller can pop open with one hand (I know, I’ve done it).

For those of you flying with young children, I recently discovered the One Step Ahead ‘Sit Seat’. This travel harness is wonderful because it attaches your baby or toddler to you or to any seat (at a restaurant or an airport, for example). My kids were never good staying in the high chair, so this harness has been a terrific addition to our traveling gear.

If any of your multiple children are under age 2, I advise bringing a baby carrier of some sort. Instead of struggling to carry your little one on your hip, strap your child to your tummy or back instead. I love my Baby Carrier by Boba—it’s lightweight and easy to shove in a bag or stroller basket.

Stock up on zipper-lock plastic bags.
When traveling with my brood, I pack more gallon-sized zipper-lock baggies than any normal person should ever consider. I use these for packing my kids’ snacks, their games, a stack of diapers for the plane, sanitized hand wipes, and I bring along many empty ones for garbage. I keep them in the car, diaper bag and even my purse. I cannot tell you how worthwhile it has been to have a place to put sticky sucker sticks, toxic diapers, errant toys and more.

Baby with favorite blanket and pacifier

Never, ever forget to pack the favorite blankie!

Book a big room and make it feel like home.
Whenever possible, I suggest booking a two-room suite or connecting rooms. I put my children in the main living room with my oldest on the sofa sleeper and the younger ones in their play yards. Unless you co-sleep at home, having a separate room for the parents allows all family members to get much better sleep while away from home.

I always bring along my children’s white noise machine, so to them it feels more homey and drowns out the random noise of guests coming and going. Also, don’t forget the night light! Of course, you MUST bring along any comfort items like a favorite blankie, stuffed toy and lots of pacifiers.

Above all, try to remember that traveling with multiple small children isn’t going to always be this difficult. You’re making memories and learning from each trip you take. Enjoy yourself too—don’t give yourself an ulcer worrying about all of the what-ifs. Kids are going to be completely unpredictable and that’s their job. Your job is to roll with it.

Do you have a great tip for traveling with multiple young children? We’d love to hear it—please share your thoughts in the comments below!

4
Shares
About Farrah Ritter, The Nomadic Travel Mama

Farrah Ritter is an adventure-seeking mama to a 4-year-old son and twin 2-year-old boys. Her family of five moved to the Netherlands in October of 2012. Originally from Michigan, she and her husband relocated to the South in 2006 and jumped over the pond with their boys in tow. She blogs at The Three Under when she can and is looking forward to documenting and sharing their European journey with anyone interested in travel with multiple small children. An Instagram and Twitter junkie (@Momofthreeunder), Farrah loves to see perspectives of others and experience the beauty of old towns and historic places.

Comments

  1. Great tips, especially with traveling season upon us. I have two young ones and can’t even wrap my head around 3 of them (that can run!). I will keep these handy (and a ton of ziploc baggies) in the coming months

  2. Getting the hotel room right is the biggest thing for us – dark and white noise are a must! I also pack a big, dark sheet to use as a blackout curtain. One night in a motel with the parking lot light right outside of our window taught me that lesson.

  3. Great tips for parents with multiple young kids. I only have two and they are nearly 7 years apart so I’m just amazed that you are actually able to get out of the house! :) Good luck with your move!

  4. Great tips! I have my first trip with two coming up and I definitely will be using these.

  5. Farrah Ritter, The Nomadic Travel Mama says:

    Leanne, I am telling you- having baggies (the one with the little zipper thing) are just so great to have wherever you’re going.

    Kat that is a fantastic idea- I never even thought to ask about that- or get a black sheet. I’m adding that to my bags.

    Lisa, we’re learning and trying as we go. Hoping that they’re great little traveling machines when they’re older. We might pay for it now- but hope for a pay off later.

  6. Zipper baggies are a must for traveling with small kids — that’s the best tip! And the white noise — another must! I can’t wait to hear more when you get across the pond!

  7. I can still remember the first time we took our girls on a plane ride and everyone kept saying how well behaved they were at 4 and 2 years old. I just came prepared. I allowed lots of time to pack the luggage, the car, ticket and baggage check in and my girls didn’t notice a thing out of the norm. Time is really valuable in making things go smoothly.
    Also, I always bring a night light too…even though my girls are 10 & 8. If they have to get up in the middle of the night, it helps out a lot.

  8. Whilst I only have one child I have found preparing your child for the journey helps.

    Explain to them about what type of transport they are going on and how long they will be going. Put it into terms they will understand eg “we are going on a plane and you will have to stay in your seat for 5 hours, that’s from lunch time until dinner”.

    Also tell them that they will be sleeping in a hotel and that Mummy, Daddy and brothers and sisters will all be there as well.

    The more they are prepared the better they can relax and enjoy the journey.

  9. Farrah Ritter, The Nomadic Travel Mama says:

    Thanks Jen, it’s going to be a rough start I’m sure. Hopefully other people will learn from our ‘misadventures’ :)

  10. Great tips. Baggies, wipies and eyeshades are still part of my travel essentials, and my kids are in their early teens now! (And, shhh, blankie still comes along with my youngest.)

Trackbacks

  1. [...] me (and the other wonderful writers) out over at Travel Mamas! Today I’m talking about my 5 Tips For Traveling With Young Twins and Multiples. I’ll be sharing and learning with some of the best travelling families around so I hope [...]

Speak Your Mind

*