How to Travel with Less Stress

Parents Share their tip

As we gear up for Family Conference 2018, many of us will face the inevitable question: how can we prepare more and stress less when it comes to traveling with our loved ones with CdLS?

One way to ease the worry is by tapping into the personal travel stories of two families in the CdLS community.

Jennifer Jo. and her crew are true “travel warriors.” Last year, she and her husband drove from Florida to Tennessee and back again during Hurricane Irma. In the car were Grace, who has CdLS, her three siblings, and their 90-pound dog. Tips to hold onto their sanity included: lots of stopping, changing Grace in the car, and driving at night so all the kids would be asleep.

“It’s not a walk in the park, but traveling with kids never is,” Jennifer noted.

On a recent ight to Baltimore, she not only spent two weeks pre-planning for the trip, but she also made sure Grace’s nurse was available to accompany them on the plane.

“I couldn’t ask for anyone better to take care of Grace,” Jennifer said. “Elizabeth used blankets and pillows to prop Grace up in the seat and that’s what we were tag-teaming constantly, not letting her sit in one spot too long.”

Since Grace needs several medical items each day such as feeding tubes, diapers, formula, and medications Jennifer also made certain they were easily accessible.

How to Prepare for Behavorial Issues

Another CdLS travel champion is Vanessa S., stay- at -home mom to 12 year-old Isaac, 9 year-old Elijah, and 7 year-old Naomi. She has learned some important lessons when it comes to traveling with Isaac, who has CdLS.

“Isaac is not medically fragile, but his big issues are behavioral, a lot of aggression, self-injury, so for us when it comes to traveling, we have found there’s so little you have control over. But one thing we can control is our time to leave. We always fly out in the morning and make sure it’s a nonstop ight,” Vanessa noted.

Another tip she lives by when it comes to travel: always coordinate Isaac’s medication schedule so they are “at their highest peak of working” during the trip.

She feels “blessed” because Isaac is a child who loves flying and watching planes.

“We try to get to the airport with plenty of time and we let him walk around and be busy, which wears him out for the ight,” she said, with a smile.

Best time of day to travel
Timing can be very important. Try and book ights when your child is generally the most relaxed and able to handle a change in routine.

Choose your airline wisely
When flying in the U.S. all airlines are bound by the Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Air Travel law. However some airlines do better than others when it comes to accommodating individuals with special needs. Visit the link below for more information.

What seat is best for your child?
It may seem trivial but this could be a game changer. Aisles may not be ideal if your child is active. ey may be bumped by beverage carts or constantly brushed against by passerby. On the other hand, window seats may have a claustrophobic feel. You know your child best.

For the full list visit:
Pre-Flight checklist
A Special Needs Pre-Flight checklist


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