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Traveling solo with kids? Tips to insure a good time

| Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017, 10:39 a.m.
Planning ahead takes the stress out of traveling solo with kids.
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Planning ahead takes the stress out of traveling solo with kids.

Traveling solo with kids? Here are five ways to ensure that good times are had by all:

Bring back-up

Of course you want to spend time with the kids. But, every grownup deserves a little R&R on their own holiday. Bring along a favorite auntie, your college roommate or another bestie who will relish some vacation time with you and your kids.

That way, you'll have a built-in pal for spa time while the youngsters are at the resort's kids camp or a trusted ear for a late night chat while the little ones are snoozing. You may also want to take turns as the “adult in charge” while the other heads to the gym, takes a nap or grabs an hour by the pool with a great book.

It's all included

Board a cruise ship or check in to an all-inclusive resort for a stress-free getaway. You'll have a clear idea of how your travel budget will break out while knowing there will be plenty of activities and dining choices for everyone in your clan. More companies such as Disney Cruise Lines and Beaches Resorts are putting extra energy toward making single parents feel welcome.

Efforts include group dining, waiving single supplements and special social events. In no time, kids will converge through sports, on the beach and during arts and crafts, thus finding age-appropriate friends with whom they can share new experiences.

The bonus: solo parents discover a window for relaxation.

Splurge on the slopes

If you and the kids are longing for a ski vacation, go all-out for a high altitude adventure. Choose a resort where the pros on the ground are determined to solve every challenge and to ensure that your focus is on making memories with the kids.

At the Sebastian in the Rocky Mountain wonderland of Vail, Colo., their amenties-on-demand program delivers ski and snow essentials to your room along with breakfast. Order up an extra pair of toasty socks, hand warmers for the kiddos or another round of sunscreen. Guests can also arrange to have a steaming bubble bath drawn prior to a return from the slopes.

Team up with the adventure concierge to plan a moonlight snowshoe adventure and ice skating for the older kids while the littlest one plays in the Tykes Room. Need the right restaurant reservation? The hospitality team is there to make sure your holiday is one for the record books

Create a custom trip

Design your own or work with an outfitter or travel agent to manifest a family getaway that will be picture perfect. Choose your destination and the desired level of adventure, and inquire about ways for each family member to have the proper mix of downtime and active participation.

Consider adrenaline-rich hiking, biking or rafting trips or itineraries that include cultural exploration in urban areas or faraway points on the globe. Your imagination and expectations paired with the experience and knowledge of a travel pro will result in a dream family vacation.

Better safe than sorry

As a parent, grandparent or any adult traveling solo with kids, it's best to carry the proper documents that will enable you to cross borders, access medical treatment in an emergency and deal with unexpected circumstances in a changing world. In most cases, a signed and notarized letter providing consent from the absent parent or parents should suffice.

Different countries have different restrictions, so inquire before you depart to avoid disappointments.

Lynn O'Rourke Hayes is a Tribune News Service writer.

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