March Break is just around the corner, which means that many families are busy planning family vacations. To make your vacation more relaxing than stressful, we’ve come up with some handy travel tips that cover Canadian passport regulations, what you’re allowed to bring in your carry-on, how to pack efficiently, and how to keep your kids occupied (and out of trouble!).
Well.ca’s also created a new Travel section to help you stock up on products to make your trip more comfortable.
As of January 31, 2008, Canadians entering the United States by land and marine ports of entry will be required to present:
a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license AND a birth certificate or a citizenship card; OR
for persons aged 18 and under, a birth certificate only; OR
a valid passport
A passport is required for travel by air to or through the United States.
Passport regulations for American citizens can be found on the Department of Homeland Security’s Website.
You’re allowed to pack liquids, gels, and aerosols in your carry-on bag as long as they’re in containers no larger than 100ml/100grams and all of the containers can fit comfortably in one clear resealable plastic bag (up to 1 litre capacity). This includes liquid foods such as yogurts, pudding and jam.
Passengers travelling with children aged 2 years and younger can bring baby formula, baby food, milk, water and juice.
There are no size restrictions for liquid prescription medicine (make sure the name matches the one on your ticket or boarding pass) and essential non-prescription liquid medicines. There’s no need to put these in a plastic bag but bring documentation supporting your medical condition if possible.
You can find even more information about carry-on and baggage regulations here.
1. Write a list!
I always find it helpful to write a list before I start packing for a trip. Partly because I find it really satisfying to cross things off a list, but more importantly because I know I won’t end up leaving the house with that nagging feeling that I’ve forgotten something. Reducing stress when travelling is key!
2. Pack light!
It can be hard to limit what you pack when it feels like you might need everything, but hauling heavy luggage around can really put a damper on a vacation. Be sure to check the weather beforehand and pack appropriately. Bring multi-purpose clothes that can be dressed down or dressed up with accessories. Bonus points if they don’t wrinkle easily! You may worry about getting sick of the few clothes you bring while you’re travelling, but once you return home those same clothes will serve as mementos from your trip. It’s also a good idea to leave room in your luggage or pack old clothes that you don’t mind leaving behind – chances are you’ll be buying new clothes and souvenirs to bring back home.
3. Bring comfortable shoes!
Travelling often entails long days on your feet so make sure you bring comfortable walking shoes that you’ve already broken in. If you know that you’ll be walking a lot on your vacation it’s not a bad idea to buy a pair of gel insoles to take the pressure off your feet. You may also want to pack a soothing foot cream to treat your tired feet at the end of the day.
Keeping your kids entertained
Questions like “are we there yet?” and “how much longer?” are unavoidable when travelling with kids, but you can keep them to a minimum by being prepared for a long drive or flight. Why not take your kids on a pre-travel shopping trip and let them pick out travel games and toys that they can open up once they’re in the car or on the plane? Or you can pack activity kits for your kids with crayons, markers, coloured pencils, stickers, glue sticks and journals. They could even write a travel journal and include postcards and mementos that they’ve picked up along the way.
Do you have any travel tips that I missed? Add your own tried and true tips in the comments section!
(Picture from here)