Practical Summer Travel Tips


Big Island

Many families will travel out of town during summer break. We had a chance to travel to Hawaii earlier this year and I made mental notes on this trip to help prepare for our next vacation.

When we spent time on the islands, it rained the first week of our vacation. I overheard locals say they got their annual rainfall in one week—unfortunately it occurred during parts of our vacation. What do you do when an unexpected curve ball occurs when you are vacationing? Enjoy! We didn’t let the rains stop us from having a good time.

I didn’t anticipate rainy weather in the high 60’s – low 70’s when I packed our suitcases. I envisioned sunny days at the beach, humid hikes in the rainforest and Hawaiian Ice to cool us down as we roamed village streets. Fortunately that did occur later in our vacation and we enjoyed the waterfalls and strolls along the pathways.

Akaka Falls

Our Hawaiian trip offered learning lessons and a chance to focus on summer travel tips. Here is a list of tips that I found helpful based on our family dynamic. It is a good idea to anticipate and list these needs before you travel for the summer:

General Tip

Sunblock. Don’t forget it, even when it’s cloudy out. We still ended up with our fair share of sun and sunburn. We are so worried about keeping the sun off the kids with hats, rash guards, and reapplying sunblock, we forgot about ourselves. My neck burned at the spot where my swim suit straps rubbed against my skin. Hub’s entire back on the other hand, OUCH. Reapply, people!


1. Downloaded book on a Kindle/iPad/iPhone. My husband rarely gets a chance to read, so he downloaded a new book before we left and was able to read a few pages while the kids napped.
2. Snacks! Feed the father! Know those Snicker’s commercials? Yep, that’s my husband. “You’re not you when your hungry.”
3. GPS. There are so many little roads, it’s easy to find yourself turned around. It’s best to change the settings to highways than shortest routes. Otherwise, you might end up on small, remote roads. Better yet, talk to the concierge and get the heads up on the best route to take.

Luke—3 1/2 years

1. DVD player/Ipad with kid friendly headphones and a new movie. It’s nearly a seven hour flight so a new movie is a great option to make time go faster.
2. Wikki Stix: They are flat and don’t take up much space and get the creativity flowing. We purchased these on our return flight and they were awesome! Luke was entertained for at least an hour and I think my husband might have enjoyed them even more.
3. Flash cards. Luke’s favorites are dinosaur information cards. He can’t read them, but he spends tons of time looking at the pictures and talking about the differences from card to card.

Ryan—10 months

1. Bottles, sippy cup, paci—for the flights ascent and descent. Ryan was fine as we took off, but I assumed the pressure didn’t bother him so I didn’t have a bottle ready to go on the descent. Lesson learned—never assume. He screamed until we got off the plane. Sorry!
2. Plenty of clothes. Accidents happen. Enough said.
3. Munchkin Arm & Hammer dirty diaper bags. These scented little gems help keep the stink out of close quarters. Your room won’t have a sealed diaper pail, so these really help with the stinkies.


1. The Ergo. My lifesaver. I wore this thing through the airport—you can even keep your bambino strapped to you while you go through security, giving you free hands to wrangle preschooler. Although you can’t have your baby strapped to you for takeoff and landing, it’s still a MUST for the flight. I strapped him in and was able to stand by my seat and bounce around until he fell asleep and then pulled up the cover to give him some shade and help muffle the sounds.
2. A cozy cardigan that matches everything. I threw this on over my Ergo so I could take it on and off as temps changed. Mine is really loose and has extra fabric I can wrap around Ryan if he needs a little blanket. I intended to just wear it on the flight but I ended up wearing it almost every day.
3. Wipes. And plenty of them!

What are your summer travel trips? Please share your recommendations in the comments! 


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