We’ve all been there – either as a disgruntled traveler stuck sitting next to the noisy kids, or the parents of bored children on flights or public transport. But fear no more – we’ve gathered some clever ways to keep your little loves occupied and entertained during your holiday.

LOAD UP

Don’t make the rookie error and rely on in-flight entertainment. They might not have your kids’ favourites, which will ultimately calm them down if they’re restless, or – shock horror – they may not be working. Pre-load your tablet or portable DVD player with some of their top films and series. If you don’t have a tablet, consider downloading some audio books to your phone. The best part? A peaceful mid-flight nap for you is guaranteed.

IN THE BAG

There’s no knowing how a baby or toddler may go on a plane, but planning ahead can help you quickly make friends with your transit neighbour. Make up a cute little goody bag to sweeten your new friends – with chocolates, ear plugs and a note explaining that your child is new to flying and may make some more noise than the usual traveler. These are always a hit – just take a look at all the photos of them on Instagram.

 

HAPPY HUES

Pack each child their own carry-on suitcase filled with new toys. Think Lego, puzzles or surprise them with colouring-in sheet print-offs of their favourite cartoon or movie character and new crayons or pencils. Not only will they be entertained, you’ll also have a masterpiece for the fridge in your serviced apartment when you land in Melbourne.
parenting.com have some great free templates available.

 

SNACK ATTACK

Dodge the sugar highs and the sugar slumps by packing nutritious snacks for when you’re on the go – whether that’s when you’re in the air on after touchdown. Aim for goodies that will take a while to eat and keep their bellies full, such as easy-to-eat and transport fruits, nuts and raisins.

 

APPY DAYS

You can sneak in some educational screen time by downloading engaging apps before you depart. Check out the following and cater to your child’s individual interests:

  • Dinosaur Mix: Little ones can build their own dinosaur from scratch, choosing between different body parts from the prehistoric creatures. Once they’ve concocted their creations, they can venture out and see what noise it makes, and what it might like to eat.
  • Drawnimal: With an encyclopaedia of animals at their fingertips, mini Picassos in the making can take their masterpieces to a whole new digital level.
  • Toca Lab: Budding scientists can hit the virtual science lab and choose elements from the periodic to put through a series of experiments. The graphics are next-level engaging.

 

OH SNAP

Kids love cameras, and lucky for you, they also double as an ideal tool to keep them distracted. Buy a cheap digital camera and watch as your kids capture precious memories through their own eyes. While they may not be as masterful as yours, these will be the ones you’ll truly treasure when you’re reminiscing down the track.