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Top Holidays

9 things to know when booking your family holiday

  • Published 20 January 2018

Travelling with kids is never an easy thing. Regardless of whether you’re going short or long-haul, there will be certain obstacles to overcome. You have to constantly keep them entertained while making sure you have all your travel documents and your suitcase packed and that’s even before you get on the aircraft. Once you’ve touched down on the other side you then have potentially overtired children that are just wanting to sleep… and we’re sure you do too.  To ensure your travel plans run like clockwork, we’ve compiled some top tips from our travel managers.

Check airplane times

Deliberating over flight times may come as a no-brainer but it can transform a potentially stressful holiday to the perfect one if travelling with children. Choosing a flight too early or too late has its pros and cons, but that’s where Winged Boots comes in. We know the best days and times to fly as well as knowing from personal experience just what it’s like to travel long haul with kids in tow.
 
Direct flights are always the simplest option, however this is dependent on location and destination. If you do have to transfer, ensure the times in between flights are as short as possible, but not too short… we don’t want to tire out their little legs now rushing from gate to gate.
 


Times have definitely changed since in-flight entertainment was one lone television showing a film at the front of the cabin. Now, you can choose what you want to watch on your own personal screen. From Disney classics to the latest blockbusters, its surprising just what films and TV shows are on offer. Make sure that there are suitable programmes for children on the TV listings but just in case, a fully charged iPad brings hours of fun so the plane ride is as smooth as can be. Just double check you brought a pair of headphones with you although the flight attendants will be armed with child-size headphones just in case you forgot.
 
If you have an infant in tow, booking a bassinet may be the ticket to a stress-free experience. The majority of international flights come with this as an option and are available to be reserved in advance. They simply attach to the back of the seat in front leaving your arms free and giving you a literal weight off your mind. 

Check in-flight entertainment

Times have definitely changed since in-flight entertainment was one lone television showing a film at the front of the cabin. Now, you can choose what you want to watch on your own personal screen. From Disney classics to the latest blockbusters, its surprising just what films and TV shows are on offer. Make sure that there are suitable programmes for children on the TV listings but just in case, a fully charged iPad brings hours of fun so the plane ride is as smooth as can be. Just double check you brought a pair of headphones with you although the flight attendants will be armed with child-size headphones just in case you forgot.
 
If you have an infant in tow, booking a bassinet may be the ticket to a stress-free experience. The majority of international flights come with this as an option and are available to be reserved in advance. They simply attach to the back of the seat in front leaving your arms free and giving you a literal weight off your mind. 

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Got milk?

Then expect it to be confiscated at security. You’re only allowed to take enough baby food and milk to last the duration of the journey. Breast milk can be taken as part of your hand luggage, however frozen isn’t allowed. Containers holding more than two litres will be swiftly confiscated by security.
  
What may be easier is to order your baby milk online using the Boots click and collect service and pick it up from the airport once you’ve hit duty free. It will save you time and money when going through security as well as giving you piece of mind. Oh, and before we forget, you can also order nappies, bottles and sun care items through this service too. It’s worth noting that individual hand baggage allowance differs depending on your airline, so be sure to check beforehand. Winged Boots are available if you need some help with this. Other commonly confiscated items are toiletries that are over 100ml, jams and spreads and oddly… snow globes.
 


Interconnecting rooms are a fabulous option if you want a little extra space during your stay or if your party goes above and beyond the standard ‘family of four’ size. Apart from more beds, you’ll also have an extra bathroom which is only a positive. In turn this choice is great if your children are older and want a little more independence while still being close by.
 
If the hotel you’re staying in has family suites this could be your best option, but ensure that there are enough beds for everyone, or that there are rollaway or additional sofa beds available to fit everyone in as an alternative.
 

Interconnecting Rooms

Interconnecting rooms are a fabulous option if you want a little extra space during your stay or if your party goes above and beyond the standard ‘family of four’ size. Apart from more beds, you’ll also have an extra bathroom which is only a positive. In turn this choice is great if your children are older and want a little more independence while still being close by.
 
If the hotel you’re staying in has family suites this could be your best option, but ensure that there are enough beds for everyone, or that there are rollaway or additional sofa beds available to fit everyone in as an alternative.
 

Drive to success

Hiring a vehicle while abroad gives you a lot more freedom than the hotel shuttle service and various excursions limited to a timeframe. Doing so means that you can set off and return whenever you please and is ideal for even the smallest explorer, especially if your hotel has parking. However, there are some things you should know before you put the key into the ignition.
 
One of the top tips would be to double check if there are child seats available. As well as keeping your child safe during your time on the roads, it will also help keep your luggage weight down as you won’t have to take your car seats from home with you. Winged Boots can easily help with car rentals plus good insurance included just in case you should need it. It goes without saying that road rules and regulations will differ compared to the UK, so ensure you know the ins and outs before putting the pedal to the metal.


Leave your travel cots and other heavy necessities at home as many four and five-star hotel cater for infants. With highchairs, baby baths, baby bouncers and even bottle sterilisers available, you’ll be able to pack lighter if you do your research beforehand. It’s also important to find out the seemingly obvious or little things such as whether the bathrooms have both a bath and shower, if the swimming pools allow children and if there’s a kids menu in the hotel restaurant.
  
With that being said, there are also plenty of facilities within some hotels that cater to both children and adults with mini-me spa treatments and fitness classes available dependent on where you go. Want to find out more? Our personal travel managers at Winged Boots have all the knowledge and guidance so you can find the best family-friendly hotel or you can click here to go to our family trip idea page.

Find out about the facilities

Leave your travel cots and other heavy necessities at home as many four and five-star hotel cater for infants. With highchairs, baby baths, baby bouncers and even bottle sterilisers available, you’ll be able to pack lighter if you do your research beforehand. It’s also important to find out the seemingly obvious or little things such as whether the bathrooms have both a bath and shower, if the swimming pools allow children and if there’s a kids menu in the hotel restaurant.
  
With that being said, there are also plenty of facilities within some hotels that cater to both children and adults with mini-me spa treatments and fitness classes available dependent on where you go. Want to find out more? Our personal travel managers at Winged Boots have all the knowledge and guidance so you can find the best family-friendly hotel or you can click here to go to our family trip idea page.

Pre-book babysitting services

Many hotels offer babysitting and childcare services which are brilliant if you fancy a romantic meal for two in the evening with your other half. However, it’s important to note that these have to be booked in advance, ideally as soon as possible. While unexpected circumstances do crop up, many hotels need at least 24-hours’ notice if not longer. You may also want to look into whether complimentary childcare is included when booking a room or suite, as this could cinch the deal.
 
Kids’ clubs are also a fantastic facility to look into if you’ve treated yourself to a spa treatment or two, but make sure you check what ages are covered with the programmes as they vary from hotel to hotel. Teens are not left out of the action either, with more and more hotels offering services and facilities for older children too such as games rooms and sporting opportunities. If you want to find out about the best destinations for the travelling teen, click here.
 


The importance of a good children’s menu can either make or break a family meal. While there are some kids who will eat any and everything, it’s more than likely that their palate is not the same as an adults.
 
Lucky for you, quite a lot of hotels have an option for younger ones with many deciding not to opt for the standard chicken nuggets and chips and go for dishes more in-keeping with the cuisine of the restaurant. Take the Four Seasons Hotel George V for example. On its menu it has the choice of a seasonal vegetable soup for starters, fillet of sole for the main course and crème caramel for dessert. While it also offers hamburgers, french fries and chicken nuggets as options, the choice is there for little tykes to explore. Who knows, they may even find their new favourite!
 

Fine dining for the whole family

The importance of a good children’s menu can either make or break a family meal. While there are some kids who will eat any and everything, it’s more than likely that their palate is not the same as an adults.
 
Lucky for you, quite a lot of hotels have an option for younger ones with many deciding not to opt for the standard chicken nuggets and chips and go for dishes more in-keeping with the cuisine of the restaurant. Take the Four Seasons Hotel George V for example. On its menu it has the choice of a seasonal vegetable soup for starters, fillet of sole for the main course and crème caramel for dessert. While it also offers hamburgers, french fries and chicken nuggets as options, the choice is there for little tykes to explore. Who knows, they may even find their new favourite!
 

Regain the balance

The biggest challenge when travelling in any group filling your days with activities that everyone will enjoy and that’s where we come in. With our things to do page you can find out what kind of excursions and experiences we can help plan down to the minutest detail. Whether it be entering a world of magic with The Hobbiton movie set tour in New Zealand or skipping the queues at Florence’s famous galleries, we know exactly how to add an extra something special to make your trip truly unforgettable.
 
Our personal travel managers are also on hand to deliver not only five-star customer service but also the holiday of your dreams. If you have any queries, questions or reservations in regards to travelling as a family you can rest assured that we have you covered. There’s no such thing as a silly question so feel free to call us on 0203 816 0985 to find out more or enquire here.
 

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