There’s nothing quite like a family getaway to rejuvenate spirits and have an incredible time together. The Duxbury household are five weeks away from our first fortnight break in three years and our second abroad trip with Short Rib. While those moments of sun-kissed bliss will make it all worthwhile (yeah, not looking forward to the four hour flight with a two year old), there are a few difficult moments that can crop up during the holiday experience.
Before you go, there’s packing and logistical issues to take care of. When you’re there, you run the risk of something going slightly wrong, like a family member falling ill or the dreaded poolside injury. While you can’t always stop that from happening, you can prepare well to reduce the chances of it being serious.
Know Where You’re Going
You’re stepping out of your comfort zone when you travel. If you’re going abroad, the countries you visit will have different practices, standards, and threats from your home. That’s why it’s important that you research thoroughly the destination that you’re visiting. It might be that it’s not safe to drink the tap water there, or that it’s expensive to visit a hospital if you’re not a local, and so on. You can’t change these things, but being aware of what to expect will stop you from making avoidable mistakes. TripAdvisor is a wonderful resource for this – their forums are bursting with local knowledge, wherever you choose to go.
Regardless of where you’re traveling to, the very nature of moving from place to another can make a few issues crop up. Children, unaccustomed to travel, can be particularly sensitive to these issues. For example, if you’re traveling across time zones then your family might suffer from jet lag. This will pass in a couple of days, but you can prepare for it in the days running up to your holiday by slowly adjusting your sleeping habits. There is also ear pain and motion sickness, both of which should be temporary.
Sometimes it can’t be helped: you or a member of your family will fall ill when away from your home. This can make the illness more distressing, as you’re in an unfamiliar location and might not understand the language. The important thing is to prepare for this to happen by having any medications and travel insurance you need, and not to panic. If it’s a serious condition, then there will be a hospital where you can get treated. If you’re feeling unwell and don’t think it merits a trip to A&E, you can use your smartphone to have a GP at hand. Falling ill might dampen the spirit of the holiday somewhat, but it’s important to remember that you can be treated just as well as if you were at home.
Safe in the Outdoors
You’ll be out exploring your new surroundings when you’re off traveling. You’ll know the outdoors of your hometown well; you won’t have the same knowledge of foreign lands. Being aware of the insects and other pest problems will enable you to buy the right insect repellent, and you should also be prepared for the weather; plenty of water and suntan lotion if you’re heading to sunny climates, plenty of layers if you’re visiting colder destinations.
In the end, keeping your family safe when you’re traveling overseas is all about being prepared. Research is absolutely key here – wherever you’re going, I hope you have a fantastic trip. Bring me back something awesome please!
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