Are you planning to bring the whole family on your next travel? If yes, there’s no doubt you should make it special, memorable, and fun. After all, it’s your first family travel since the onset of the pandemic.
According to the U.S. Family Travel Survey conducted by the Family Travel Association (FTA) and the NYU School of Professional Studies, 88% of parents said they are most likely to take their kids to travel in the next 12 months. This means that more parents are now confident to bring their kids outdoors.
Parents have different views on whether kids should be able to travel now, given that majority of children have not yet been vaccinated. The decision is in the hands of the parents, but generally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has given recommendations for families who would be traveling with children that have not been vaccinated. These include wearing masks indoors. While wearing masks outdoors is not required, the CDC recommends doing so in crowded outdoor areas and if there will be close contact with people that have not yet been vaccinated.
With more people getting vaccinated, most parents are now bringing their children on outdoor trips, as long as the environment is safe and controlled. Children had their own struggles during the pandemic, too, and they also deserve to breathe and unwind like everybody else.
Kids have mental issues, too
The pandemic has caused stress and anxiety over children more than we think. And, it is evident how children responded to their online learning.
According to the American Family Survey conducted by Deseret News and BYU’s Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy, one-third of parent respondents said that the sudden shift to distance learning affected their children’s learning. At least 19% of them said that the grades of their children went even worse.
In another survey conducted by researchers at the Lurie Children’s Hospital, half of the parent respondents had talks with their primary care provider on mental health issues experienced by their kids. There were also parents who actually availed of mental health services last year. Most of these parents had observed behavioral distress symptoms including putting up tantrums, being clingy, sleeping problems, having nightmares, and struggles in engaging with other kids.
These figures show how the whole pandemic setup has taken a toll on the mental health of kids. Aside from the online learning setup, being stuck indoors all day and night affected their activity interests and their engagement with other people.
This is what pushed other parents to take the kids on outdoor trips, to make sure that they get to breathe in some fresh air and distress. The only challenge is to make the whole trip safe for kids and the whole family as well.
The key is to plan well
If you want to take your kids on a trip, it is best to plan activities that are outdoors. Experts also say that nature trips are therapeutic, so might as well bring them somewhere close to nature for fresh air.
The goal is to let the kids feel refreshed after almost two years into the pandemic. But, don’t forget to be creative. Here are some cool ideas on where to take the kids for an outdoor trip:
Take them on a boat trip
It doesn’t matter if you want to go fishing or if it’s just a casual stroll by the beautiful lake. There are boat rentals available your small and large groups, perfect for your family. There are also ski boats available if you want to have fun water activities. You can also go on a side trip to swim with the kids. Water activities will surely be fun and enjoyable for the whole family.
You wouldn’t want to bring your kids to crowded areas, so camping would be a good idea. A little hike wouldn’t hurt. You can pitch your tents for a good night’s sleep in the mountains. Let the kids do some s’mores and barbecue over a bonfire. You can also bring instruments like the guitar, or play board games together.
Take them to photo walks and photo shoots.
If you don’t want to go far, you can take them to the park for a photo walk. You can just walk around and appreciate the scenery. The kids can also have some fun doing outdoor photoshoots. Bring crazy props for them to play around with and let them do crazy poses together. They will surely have the best of time.
It’s time to give your kids a break. But, be sure to protect them at all costs. The virus is still out there, and you wouldn’t want your kids to get sick. The key is in perfect planning and in making sure that you follow the safety protocols. Your kids deserve a nice trip after all that they’ve been through this pandemic.