After months of lockdowns, families are getting cabin fever, and they’re ready to get away for a week or two. If this sounds like your situation and you have very young children, traveling may pose its own frustrations. These tips will help you make the journey go a little more smoothly with your toddler or child.

Always Expect a Mess

It seems as though kids always manage to find something dirty or messy to play with in any situation. This will hold true in airports, on trains, or in your own vehicle as you travel with your kids. You can be prepared for this situation by keeping a supply of sanitized wipes in a purse or pocket. Since there may not always be a bathroom nearby, this will help you keep your toddler’s fingers clean and as germ-free as possible.

Vaccinate Early

Vaccinations can be important depending on where you’re traveling. And after, they may make a baby or small child a little cranky. When making your vacation plans, contact your pediatrician to find out what vaccines may be coming up so you can plan your trip around the shots

Don’t Board First

Even though airlines typically let parents with young children and toddlers board first, this often leads to a bored and frustrated child creating an uproar before the plane takes off. The best option is to send one parent to board the plane first, so they can stow carry-ons and get situated. Later, the remaining parent and child can board with the last of the passengers to ensure they won’t have a long wait before takeoff.

Leave an Empty Seat

When booking your flight, it’s a good idea to choose one aisle seat and the corresponding window seat. That middle seat will be among the last to be filled, so it may be possible that it will remain vacant and can be used by your child for free. If someone does claim it, you can trade them the window seat to allow your family to sit together.

It’s Not Over After You Take Off

As you fly, your child may become restless. Even parents with a strict rule about using a laptop or mobile device as a babysitter should reconsider this rule during travel. Anything that will keep your toddler entertained during a flight or train ride can make your trip go much easier.