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Health and Safety when Travelling with kids

Health and Safety when Travelling with kids

A family holiday is fun and rewarding but it’s not always easy to find a suitable destination for child friendly holidays.  Every hotel, and every holiday that we recommend has been handpicked by the Little Travellers Team.

They have all been chosen for the key reasons that would be important to you, such as; location, spacious family rooms, child services and for the facilities and entertainment that are on offer – all to assist you in finding that perfect family holiday.

Our recommended selection, doesn’t mean that it offers supervised kids clubs, adventure playgrounds, and children's menus -although it may offer all these and more! The holidays and hotels shown are recommended because the accommodation truly welcomes families.

Staying safe during your family holiday

Suitable accommodation would depend on your children and their ages, so always check whether the holiday or hotel is suitable for your family.

Latest travel advice by country including safety and security, entry requirements, travel warnings and health can be found on the FCO pages.

When ordering travel insurance, consider including covering the family for cost of accommodation and ticket re-issue should you be unable to travel. If you travel more than twice a year, you could save money by purchasing an annual insurance.

Our recommended insurance companies:

Columbus travel insurance - Have a reputation for putting customers first and have won multiple awards for their excellent cover and customer service.

Flexicover - Offer cheap insurance for single-trip, and annual policies. Flexicover is a division of Citybond Holdings Plc, and one of the UK's leading direct insurance sellers, trading since 1983.

Insurefor.com - Offers highly competitive travel insurance. Insurefor.com is part of Rock Insurance Innovation, winning ‘Travel Service Provider of the Year 2010’.

Apply for your European health insurance card

When travelling within Europe, you are entitled to the free European Health Insurance Card or reduced emergency care - you still need full travel insurance though! The E111 has been replaced by the European Health Insurance Card which gives EU nationals the same level of healthcare as a local resident in a member country when travelling. The EHIC card can be ordered online (7 days) or at the post office (21 days). Make sure your existing vaccinations are up-to-date, such as polio and tetanus - if not, you can arrange booster jabs. It is especially important to ask your GP or Travel Clinic for advice about immunisations for you and your family if you are travelling further afield. Some inoculations need to be given at least eight weeks prior to your travel date in order for them to work effectively.


General safety suggestions:


  • Apply sunscreen regularly, even on a cloudy day, and ensure the kids wear their hats.

  • When staying in unfamiliar places, be vigilant to those potential dangers around you, such as unfenced swimming pools, and areas. Although toddlers who swim regularly can still panic if they accidentally fall into the water.

  • Always accompany your children when playing next to, or in the sea.

  • If you child is bottle fed, remember to have available sterlising equipment / milton tablets when you need it.

  • Although in most areas you can easily find a chemist, but worth packing a few items such as baby paracetamol (pain), ibruprofen (fever) along with sun block, insect repellent and savlon (or similar).

  • Talk to your children about basic safety rules, like staying close to parents and discuss a place to meet should get separated. Some people have been known to carry a recent photo of their children just in case they need help in locating their child!


  • Child proofing your accommodation


  • Call or email the hotel ahead of your arrival to ask about baby-proofing, some hotels offer this service, or can allocate baby proof rooms and request a cot, if required.

  • On arrival, remove anything dangerous that is within baby's reach. Look for floor lamps, lamps with dangling electrical cords, anything that can be pulled off a table or desk. Housekeeping should be happy to remove these items from your room or you could place them high up in a wardrobe.

  • Secure any loose cords or wires.

  • Cover any plug sockets that are easily reached by your baby/toddler

  • Water in hotels can be very hot. If this is the case, if you child can easily reach the bathroom tap, keep the door closed. If there is a bidet in the room, it likely has a faucet handle that is very low to the ground, turn the hot water off to prevent them scolding themselves as younger kids love bidets!

  • Hotels tend to make your cots very comfortable for your little ones, with cosy pillows, sheets and blankets. Remove any loose bedding and make sure that the mattress fits snugly... just as if you were at home. You may prefer to take one of your own baby sleeping bags.

  • If you are concerned about little fingers in the doors, throw a hand towel over the top of the door to prevent pinched fingers. You can even tape over the lock to prevent a toddler from locking themselves in the bathroom!

  • Close and lock windows that can be easily reached by your child and move furniture away from windows and balconies.


  • Safety suggestions when travelling


  • Car – Use the appropriate car seats/ booster seats when travelling. All countries have different rules to travelling with children in cars - some European countries do not allow children in the front seats. Click here for up- to-date information on car travel abroad.

  • Be careful when loading cars, not to pile items too high in the boot of estates, or on the back shelf -these items could come flying off should you suddenly break.

  • Use window shades/covers to keep the sun off shining in your little ones face.

  • Stop regularly for toilet stops and to stretch legs, which also helps reduce motion sickness.

  • Motion sickness

    Place car seats so that children can see out the windows. Keep the car cool and well ventilated and avoid strong odours. It is best that children prone to sickness do not read, or draw whilst car in motion and that you encourage older children to focus on distant scenery. Providing light snacks before and during the journey, with frequent small drinks of cold water, and juice can help reduce sickness. If possible, try to drive during the hours when children are usually asleep.

  • Bus or train – Try to keep very young children seated on your lap and don’t let them crawl or walk around while the vehicle is moving as they may fall.

  • Airports / Flights – If travelling alone, keep toddlers on a rein and babies in a carrier. If two or more adults are travelling, perhaps allocate an adult to keep an eye on the young children, whilst the other attends to baggage and check in.

  • Take water on flight, it is particularly good to drink on take off, and landing to ease the pain in ears, and throughout flight to prevent dehydration. Only 200ml of liquid can be taken through security, so you will need to purchase bottled water from the departure lounge.

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