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Summer vacation safety for kids

Christina Holt is a blogger and freelance writer who lives in Southern California with her husband and three boys. Christina uses her love of design, adventures in parenting and teaching background as inspiration for her writing on numer...

Keep your kids safe while away

Going on vacation can be stressful for parents and children. There are crowds of new faces, new places, luggage to keep track of and hidden dangers that children are often not aware of. Read these travel tips and safety reminders to ensure your family is safe while traveling this summer.

Travel preparation tips

With these safety tips from SafeKids.org, you can educate and prepare your children and yourself prior to your vacation travels.

  • If you are staying at a friend or family member’s house, discuss the importance of creating a safe environment for your children. Ask that they take the necessary precautions prior to your arrival — baby gates, outlet covers, cabinet locks, portable monitors and a self-closing, self-locking gate around a swimming pool or Jacuzzi.
  • Discuss travel rules and emergency contact information with older children.
  • Purchase ID bracelets ahead of time if planning a trip to a crowded destination — like an amusement park.
  • Memorize the Poison Control Hotline number: 800-222-1222.
  • Make a list of the urgent care centers and emergency rooms closest to your destination.

Car travel safety tips

  • Tip: Test the installation of your car seat prior to embarking on a car trip.
    Always travel with your child’s car seat — keeping it properly installed in your vehicle.
  • Never leave your child alone in the car.
  • Secure all loose items in the car, as they can become projectile objects in the event of an accident.
  • Engage child safety locks (doors and windows) while on the road.
  • Should your baby need assistance, pull the car over and stop before tending to your child.

Simple tips for road trips with kids >>

Air travel safety tips

  • Tip: Do not rent or use someone else’s car seat as you will have little or no knowledge of the past crash history or if the seat is expired.
    Always travel with your child’s car seat — you will need it to and from the airport.
  • Whenever possible, purchase a ticket for your child and keep him or her restrained properly in a certified, aircraft-approved, installed car seat.
  • Children who have outgrown car seats should sit directly in the aircraft seat with the lap belt across their thighs or hips.

Tips for traveling alone with the kids >>

Sleep travel safety tips

  • Tip: If you do use a borrowed crib, inspect it for broken or missing pieces and check www.recalls.gov for possible recall information.
    Bring your own travel crib instead of relying on a borrowed crib.
  • Never place pillows, soft bedding or toys inside your baby’s travel crib.
  • Bring or borrow a baby monitor to listen for your child.
  • Use a sound soother during nap or night time to help reduce the amount of unwanted travel noises and to help your child sleep better.

Destination travel and safety tips

Once you have taken the precautions and executed the car and/or air travel tips, you will need to keep your children safe once you reach your destination.

  • Use sunscreen and set an alarm on your watch or phone as a reminder to reapply every one to two hours.
  • Designate a central meeting spot in the event a parent or child is separated from the group.
  • Teach and visually show your children the proper people to ask in the event they are lost or need help.
  • Keep your children and yourself hydrated while in the heat, on your feet and while traveling.
  • Keep healthy snacks handy to help avoid hunger meltdowns.

More on traveling with kids

Travel kits for kids: 15 ideas
7 Unique family vacation destinations
Travel with kids: Getting ready

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