Travel; Why Travelling with Children is TOUGH

We do love to travel.  And we do take both kids with us hoping to instil in them the same love to travel we have.

The Toddler has been on over 40 flights (expat kid) and is up to double digits in his country count.  How many near 3 year olds do you know that have been to Singapore twice on holiday??  The Baby is, understandably, behind.

But often we wear rose tinted specs when it comes to travelling with the boys.  And the idealistic holidays don’t quite turn out idealistic.

Maybe we are imagining holidays of old.  Maybe we expect too much.  Maybe, just maybe, sometimes kids are kids and that doesn’t change if you are at home or a beautiful 5* resort in Thailand.

Tantrums still happen.

So, in the view of honesty about our holidays I’m going to share some of our “moments”.  Those moments when I turn to my husband and say

Why do we bother?

Or he turns to me and says

Never again

Of course we haven’t actually ever banned ourselves from going on holiday or stopped.  But for those split seconds all you want to do is be at home.

Travelling with children is TOUGH

#1 – Pram Problems

When the Toddler was a baby we went to the Christmas Markets in Belgium.  As he was only 8 weeks old at the time we took our pram.  Our massive, ginormous, 2 piece Bugaboo Chameleon.

On the tube to Kings Cross.  On the Eurostar through to Brussels.  Across the city in Brussels.  On the train down to Bruges.  Through the markets.

Belgium is not made for massive prams.  We had fights with it on the narrow streets.  We struggled to get it INSIDE anywhere to eat.  A lot of the holiday was spent eating chips and mayo in the freezing cold.

Me and the massive pram
Me and the massive pram

#2 – Timezone Troubles and £300 Dinners being ruined

Timezones.  Travelling through them when you know what’s going on is bad enough for jet lag, when babies don’t have a clue and dragging them 8 hours forward from London to Singapore?

Your sleep is topsy turvy.  Your baby is awake through the night and comes out to play at dinner time.  Those lovely expensive honeymoon dinners.  Where half is spent with one of you frantically walking the pram (no longer the massive one – lesson learnt) up and down outside the restaurant while the other glugs down the over priced wine.

That’s what happens when you take a baby on a luxury honeymoon!

Enjoying a cocktail after "that" dinner - you can just see the pram!
Enjoying a cocktail after “that” dinner – you can just see the pram!

#3 – Sleeping Issues

Other than the obvious time zone problems we discovered another recently.  The Toddler is now in a bed.  A bed he can climb out of.

At home we have a stairgate on his room so he can play before bed if he really, really wants too and we know eventually he will climb into bed and go to sleep.  On holiday?

No stairgate.

So one Toddler popping up every 5 minutes.


There was also the added safety measure which led to this arrangement on the stairs


Not exactly the best blockade but we figured it would cause enough noise to wake us and alert us to a Toddler on the prowl.  Luckily instead he liked to come into our room.

#4 – Changing Woes


Plane toilet.

Enough said.

#5 – Luggage Allowances

Ahhh.  Yes the limit of 23kg when travelling with most airlines.  Less if you go with a low cost carrier. Then you go travelling with children.

Children mean that you pack the kitchen sink.  Literally.  Things that they might may possibly once in a blue moon use.  Ignore the fact you don’t use it at home.  Ignore the fact that its massive and takes up so much room in your bag.  It has to come.

Guess what.  You won’t use it.

And space in the case is a premium – otherwise you are limited to wearing the same shorts and vest all holiday.  With possibly a bikini thrown in.


Though I must say we’ve gotten better at packing.  Mainly because my husband is ruthless and goes through what I’m planning and questions it all.  I recommend this method!

There you have it, 5 issues with travelling with small people.  It’s tough.  Kids will be kids wherever they are.

But it’s worth it.

We have some incredible memories and have shared some beautiful moments.  Moments that make all those “what were we thinking” thoughts go away as we book our next adventure….

Me and the Toddler at the Treasury in Petra
Me and the Toddler at the Treasury in Petra


  1. September 17, 2015 / 10:00 pm

    Your makeshift stair gate is genius! I can relate to all of these. Trying to change a baby in an airplane toilet when there is a queue of people outside listening to the screaming is no fun! And my husband always says the same to me when we travel (even if it’s a day trip in the car) – never again!! x

    • Laura
      September 18, 2015 / 12:40 am

      Haha I am so glad that its not just us! We really panicked over being without our baby jail! X

  2. September 18, 2015 / 1:59 am

    Agreed – I’ve towed my boys all over the globe, and we’ve definitely had our share of “never again” moments. But, as you said, so, so, so worth it! And you went to Petra with them – wow! 🙂

    • Laura
      October 12, 2015 / 11:44 am

      We only had one when we went to Petra!x

  3. September 18, 2015 / 3:22 pm

    Always love your honest approach, yep nodding and agreeing to every single one of these. Life on the move is absolutely no less difficult and often more infuriating with little ones in tow, especially when you’ve paid good money for it and they spend the whole time asking when can we go home, then you ask what their trip highlight was “that they got to sleep in a bed together”. Very worldly.

    Yep love it so much that I am dedicating my whole life to blogging about it now : )

    • Laura
      October 12, 2015 / 12:10 pm

      Love this Keri, but I remember that being a highlight for me sharing a room! Travelling can be infurirating at the best of times without children!xx PS when are you next up this way? we are staying put a while!

  4. October 2, 2015 / 9:16 am

    Wow, a very well travelled little one. I never ventured out of the UKnwhen my boys were small, but still recognise some of those on your list like oversized prams and no stair gates. #effitfriday

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:31 am

      Typical #expatbrat going on! X

  5. October 2, 2015 / 10:07 am

    I’ve not travelled much with my kids, mainly because of my son’s sleep/ear/sensory issues, and they’re now older so it’s much easier but my mum travelled all over with me and my brother and had tales to tell of it! It’s not easy!

    Thanks for hosting! #EffitFriday

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:31 am

      No problem 🙂 it’s not easy but it’s worth it and we forget the problems each time until next time….

  6. Gemma @ Confessions of a Nagging Mother
    October 2, 2015 / 12:19 pm

    Ah all the bad parts of travelling with babies / young children is worth it when you are left with the memories 🙂


    Gemma xx

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:32 am

      Totally Gemma 🙂

  7. October 2, 2015 / 12:53 pm

    Lol – it’s the luggage allowances that kill me! #effitfriday

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:33 am

      We’ve got it down to fine art now, kids have everything we have a tiny space!

  8. October 2, 2015 / 2:54 pm

    Setting up home from home isn’t easy is it! We did a cruise when the big one was a toddler. He would go to sleep in the night nursery so we could go and get dinner. Everything was great until we’d pick up our sleeping baby from the nursery to go back to the cabin and every passenger we saw would shout “Is he asleep?” and give him a poke. He WAS asleep. Now thanks to you he is not!!!! #effitfriday

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:34 am

      Oh this is interesting we are headed on a cruise in January and especially interested in the whole night nursery portion, I have a feeling I’ll be coming back with tales of no sleeping children! X

  9. October 2, 2015 / 4:22 pm

    Love that you’re still travelling! We did our first o/s trip not long ago (missy living in Oz, but being half-British), and, after it all it made me feel like I could do anything! So lucky to be able to share such incredible adventures with our kids. Happy travels! #effitfriday

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:34 am

      Thanks! Every time we say never again but it’s not stopped us yet!

  10. October 2, 2015 / 4:55 pm

    I think it’s great that you haven’t let having young children stop you travelling. In a few years time when the kids are old enough to really understand what’s going on, they will be so happy to be visiting all these fab places : Thanks for hosting #effitfriday

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:35 am

      We just want to instil a sense of the world is a big place to explore in them which is fantastic. And get them used to flying #expatbrat problems x

  11. October 2, 2015 / 5:09 pm

    thats fantastic that you guys are able to travel so much. After a few trips with a cranky, non-sleeping toddler, we’ve left her behind the last few times. We keep saying that next time we will bring her, but then we chicken out

    • Laura
      October 9, 2015 / 7:36 am

      Haha well we also managed a SPECTACULAR trip to the Maldives. Sans kiddos. That was lush! We’re in such an amazing travel hub it seems rude not to take advantage!

  12. October 22, 2016 / 7:35 pm

    Yep, agree on all points. It sounds like you’ve done incredibly well though. Extra respect for taking a baby on honeymoon!

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