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Travel With Kids; The Importance of a Pre-Travel Family Pep Talk | Travel & Vacation Tips & Resources

The Importance of a Pre-Travel Family Pep Talk

We usually talk to our children about safety matters such as walking to school, taking public transportation, going to the mall with friends, or what to do if a stranger approaches them. These lessons are just as important to talk about before you embark on a family trip.

Here then are some topics to discuss during the pre-travel family talk:

Let’s assume you are taking a family trip to Disney World. It’s a big park with thousands of people. The family may be standing on line and some activity may attract a child so that they walk off.

  • Talk to the kids about what to do in case they get lost, either at a theme park or anywhere else you travel to. Tell them to look for a security guard or a theme park employee. They are quite noticeable and can help your child find his way back to you.

             Sometimes children do not know the difference between friend and foe.

  • Talk about the importance of not talking to strangers – at any time. If a stranger asks them to go with them somewhere, tell your children to run and find you or someone with a uniform.

             In this day and age of cell phone use, it can make all the difference in finding a child.

  • If your children are of the age where they know how to use a cell phone, give each one a phone so that if they do find themselves lost they can call you and give you a clear indication of where they are.

             Children tend to wander off when something different gets their attention.

  • Ingrain in your children that when you tell them to stay in one place, you are doing so for their own protection.

             Statistics show that teens are most prone to abduction.

  • Make it clear to your teens that this is a family vacation. They may think they can move around outside the view of their parents, but it must be explained there are predators out there who may be watching them.

Before you prepare to leave for your trip, find a map of the area and make a map for the kids. Once you arrive at the destination, take out the maps and show them where you are and set up meeting points in case they do wander away or get lost in the crowds.

We have all experienced our children standing next to us in a department store one minute and then a second later you hear them in another department. Talking to your kids about strangers and getting lost is an important and on-going exercise – no matter what their age. It bears repeating over and over, whether you are on vacation or shopping at a mall. It’s that important!


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