Guest Authors, Kids

Take Your Kids Around the World – Tips from Tea

Summer travel season is almost here, so we asked our friends at Tea, the globally inspired children’s clothing company to share their best advice for traveling with children. Yes, it can be done!

Each season Tea visits a different global destination, and shares inspiration and stories of these trips through their line of clothing. Their blogger Nuala asked her colleagues for tips from recent travels.

- Lara Starr, Children’s Marketing Manager

At Tea, we often hear that world explorers stop traveling when they have children, and that the obstacles of traveling with little ones seem insurmountable. Is it possible to handle nap times, new foods, long plane rides, and can you really explore a new city with an infant in tow? The answer is yes! It is all still possible.

Manage Your Expectations

Amy, who works in Retail Sales at Tea, took her 1 and 3-year old children to Spain in the summer of 2009. “For us, the key to traveling with the kids was to make sure it wasn’t such a fast pace that it didn’t feel like a true vacation. We were originally planning to do Barcelona for the entire stay but after a bit of research, felt that Valencia offered a slightly slower pace that would be better with the kiddies. Choose your destination based on the kind of experience you want to share with your children.

 

Amy and her children Will (age 1) and Chloe (age 3) stroll around Valencia, Spain. Chloe and Will are both wearing Tea clothing

Stay Sane on the Plane

We’ve all heard the babies who won’t stop crying on flights, and the toddlers throwing tantrums. But what we don’t hear and maybe don’t notice are the quiet ones. Most children do just fine on airplanes, and with a little planning flying can be a stress-free experience. Our CEO Leigh’s children love the iPad app Ansel and Clair’s Adventures in Africa, which is both entertaining and educational. Bring coloring and activity books, if possible pertaining to the destination that you’re visiting. Look for interactive books that will keep kids interested throughout the trip, such as the 3-D Atlas, or Taro Gomi’s Play All Day activity book. Keeping a small stash of toys and games to dole out throughout the trip can help keep things interesting for slow afternoons and the flight home.

 

Leigh’s son Adam enjoying and exploring in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Time Change and Schedules

Once you’ve arrived at your destination, what should you do? Logistics like time changes and nap times can make things complicated – Amy chose to just ignore the time change, and let her children nap when they needed to. Her family slept in each morning and when her children fell asleep in the evening she and her husband ate dinner late in Spanish style, around 9pm.

Leigh and her husband took their two small sons to San Miguel de Allende in Mexico last summer, and chose to keep the schedule simple during their vacation, focusing on one adventure each day. Activities that formerly would have been mundane, such as grabbing lunch in a local café, are transformed into being an event and cultural experience in their own right. In Leigh’s words, “We had our eyes opened to discovering a new place through children’s eyes. Until we had kids, we would walk right past a fire truck or a pasture of horses without even a comment. But now, we stop, take pictures, talk about every little detail.”

See and Share

The next Tea family vacation on the horizon is Marjorie’s. Marjorie is a designer at Tea, and she and her husband are taking their children (ages 4 and 7) to Myanmar for the first time, to learn about and appreciate their ethnic and cultural heritage. While they’re there they are also planning on visiting Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia! To maximize the cultural experience with her children, Marjorie says, “We will most likely visit family friends, Buddhist temples, and our old community. Nate’s (her husband’s) parents usually bring 2 suitcases full of donation clothes and toiletry products to their friends and community there. I am hoping that this experience will open our children’s eyes to their cultural history and appreciation for what they have.”

A “Bon Voyage” Gift – Discount at Tea!

15% off at Tea until May 26th

Use this promotion code at checkout: BXT2L5M

Travel with your children. Share the world with them, and let them slow you down and show you what they’re seeing. You will all leave the experience with a greater sense of cultural richness.

- Nuala, blogger for Tea

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