Key Things to Scope Out Before Traveling with a Special Needs Child
Whether you are planning a day trip or a vacation you want it to be a successful experience for the entire family. When your family includes a special needs child it may be desirable to do a little research before the trip to ensure there are no surprises. Here are some things to scope out before you go.
Scope Out the Surrounding Area
If you have a child that tends to run you will want to make sure the destination is contained or safe. For example a playground adjacent to a busy road would be ill-advised. Try to scope out the area surrounding your destination prior to heading there so you know it will be safe. Or you can take the appropriate precautions such as parking the car to block the exit. Although the destination itself may look awesome it is important to take a birds eye view and find out what surrounds it.
Scope Out Any Events
If you have a child that becomes overwhelmed in a crowd it may be wise to check if any events are planned for your destination when you wil be there. For example, if you are planning a fishing expedition it may be worthwhile to investigate if any fishing derbies are scheduled for the same time and location. If so alter your plan by changing the day or location so everyone can have a wonderful experience.
Scope Out Food Options and Policies
Spending the day in a children's museum or play center? It is worthwhile to verify the details of their food options and food policy. If your child has special dietary restrictions you should check to see if food purchased on site will meet those restrictions. If satisfactory food is not available make sure you are allowed to bring in your own food. Some places have a 'no outside food' policy to prevent children with allergies from being exposed to trigger foods. If this is the case consider bringing a cooler with adequate food in the car and asking to leave the museum or play center and return after lunch.
Scoping out the details described above will benefit your family by helping you avoid unexpected issues on your trip. Contact us for additional tips about positive travel experiences for all families including those with special needs.
From Parents, Travel Writers,