One of the things that bothered me slightly when we found out we were going to have a third child was would we take them on holiday as a family of 5. Would we cope? Holidays with three children are a different kettle of fish. No, let’s rephrase that. Holidays with kids generally are nothing like what they were pre-children. Some say it is literally the same hard work but in a different location (they use different words but I’m trying to be family friendly!) In our experience that isn’t entirely true but we do holiday with my parents, so we do have two extra pairs of hands most of the time, which is a huge help. But long gone are the days reading in the sun, drinking cocktails, late nights and long lazy walks. They are replaced with the Mini Disco, early bedtime and rises, the kid’s pool and cocktails (yes they were never going to go!)
We have holidayed abroad every year since the gremlin was born, in various amazing places: Turkey, Fuerteventura, Rhodes, Cyprus, Crete and Croatia. We always travel with TUI and we always look for savings, like Codesium who offer specific deals, depending on what sort of holiday you choose. We would use a discount code HOTEL, as usually stay in a hotel when we go on holiday, where you can save up to £60, depending one how much you spend. This year we are going back to Rhodes again and staying in The TUI Blue Atlantica Aegean Blue and cannot wait!
I am a little scared though. We will have a crazy 15 month old boy. He is going to be running off. He is going to be feral. The girls I know will be better, of course a little tired maybe. BUT we have coped before. This will be our second holiday with three children and we did it before. In fact, we had a great time. I wasn’t pregnant or worrying about being pregnant!
And as we did survive, here are some of my top tips:
Holidays with Three Children – How To Survive
– Go with family if this is possible. I am generally a person who believes in safety in numbers. We always go away with my parents and it is a HUGE help, even more so when you have three children. We make sure we have ground rules; my parents have time to themselves in the evenings, they go off alone for meals and my Step-Dad is always hitting the gym. In return though, hubby and I get date nights, I can go to the gym and I do get to read and have cocktails with my Mum. Winner.
– Consider a resort or all-inclusive. I know for some people this isn’t their cup of tea at all but it is easier with kids in some respects. You don’t have to worry about food or drinks. You don’t have to clean or tidy up. You don’t have to leave! You don’t have to plan entertaintment: there is always loads for the kids to do. Granted it can get repetitive and you have to get dressed for dinner most nights but I think the pros can outweigh the cons with kids. I’ve written about this before here.
– Relax a little with the rules. I do find it hard to let my girls pig out or watch the iPad or whatever but on holiday, it is their holiday too. I have to let me eldest chill with an ice-cream for a bit. Well it means I can have a sneaky cocktail or relax in a hammock for a bit!
– Do NOT feel guilty about using a holiday club for the kids if one is available. I have to be honest, we didn’t use them until the last two years or so. My eldest made a friend the first time and wanted to go with her and last year she just wanted to go. It keeps them out of the sun, keeps them cool and is good entertainment. Plus you get a rest. If you have three kids and are one or two down? Someone gets a rest whilst the other is with the third!!!
– Pack plenty of things to do. My girls don’t constantly want to be in the pool or playing in the park. They like to bring down stickers, dolls, toys and books and play by the pool. They are getting to the age where they play together a lot, so means a little easier to chill together if they have lots to do.
– Pack sensibly, as you will have A LOT to pack for three kids. My hubby always uses these travel cubes for packing and I have to admit they are a game changer. You can pack one child’s clothes in one, your underwear in another. You get me! Nothing gets muddled up and so easy to pack and unpack and bag up washing too. I also consider clothes I know they will wear (my middle child is fussy) and ensure they are easy to take on and off (less time and less tantrums).
Holidays with three children and never going to be “easy”, especially when they are small and need a lot of attention and looking after. However, I do feel you can have good time. You can relax. It’s just being prepared and having a good mindset.
Enjoy your holidays this year!
Disclosure – this is a sponsored post.