Trip Reports are Apparently Very Different with Kids

Jared Blank shares the future with luxury travel bloggers, once they have kids.

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Lame. I’ve been a father for almost three years, and it just gets better. Sure, it costs more miles, but it is SO AWESOME to present your two year old as a Platinum Medallion (as Jasmine did when we were with Delta) and the subsequent looks when she gets to sit next to mommy and daddy up front. She has two more transatlantic legs to qualify as a Star Alliance Gold with Continental for this year.

    Then again, she only threw up her milk once, which was caught by my leather jacket. Maybe I would change my mind if I had the vomit babies.

  2. Hey, vomit clean up is just part of the job, and they don’t do that forever (even though it may seem like it at times). But travel with kids is great. You tend to seek all of the best parks and playgrounds, and find yourself enjoying the new cities the way the locals do, and not just admiring the furnishings in the newly remodeled lounge. Plus, you, too, might be lucky enough to get a thank-you note from your 12-year-old son a few years later saying “thank you so much for taking us to Hawaii again. You guys always take us to all the best places.”

  3. Carrying a car seat, in addition to all of the other necessities of a two year old, through an airport can certainly affect the enjoyment of the trip.

    I realize that our exotic travels will be curtailed for a while and that is why I enjoy living vicariously through the trips I read about on this blog. I thank you for your trip reports and for all I have learned from you over the years.

  4. I view lugging a carseat with kids in tow through the terminal as a much-needed workout 😀

  5. Nothing’s going to be perfect once you take a child out of their comfort/familiar surroundings; maybe I just prepare/expect for worst case scenario when traveling with kids (I am no expert either, we have a 6 week old – so we have all that to look forward to 🙂

  6. Traveling with kids is a trade-off, but at this point in my life I certainly feel like I get a lot more out of traveling with kids than I possibly could traveling without them.

    Sure, I would love to be able to enjoy all the services that are provided in First on a Trans-Atlantic flight and I’d like to have the time to fully consider the menu in detail, and fully explore the entertainment system – instead I spend my time trying to keep the kid entertained, fed and well rested…but on the other hand, the places that you go with kids are so much different – places most people would never spend time visiting if without kids. Some of my most cherished photos are the ones I have of my kid playing at playgrounds all over the world. And if planned right, there is nothing more fun than seeing a foreign country from a kid’s perspective. There will be time when I am older to enjoy the luxuries of travel, for now all those upgrades and first class lie-flat beds just make the coming and going a little easier. With kids the “transit” time of a trip is not exactly easy, but the time on the ground is way, way better (at least for me).

  7. Hi all – I wrote the post that Gary linked to. I’m in complete agreement with you guys — dragging the kids along is wonderful, and well worth the troubles. I just think it’s funny to compare what a childless traveler worries about (please, oh please, I hope there’s a first class seat available on my flight to Bangkok), versus someone traveling with two 4-year-olds (please, oh please, don’t throw up on me while we’re landing). Traveling with kids is rewarding in ways that traveling just with adults can never be (I JUST SAW A LIZARD!!!!!!!). Traveling is about experiences, and there’s nothing — good and bad — quite like traveling with little ones.

  8. So true Jared. When I was single and traveling I couldn’t understand why people wanted a child, now I don’t want to be without little Jasmine going with me!

  9. The biggest challenge I’ve ever had traveling with my kids is trying to secure 5 F/J class award tickets on a Skyteam carrier.

    Compared to that, everything else is cake.

  10. Wow – what is going on here? 10 comments about traveling with kids, and none of them are filled with ranting or complaining – I feel like I’ve entered some parallel internet universe!

    Seriously – great responses. My husband and I certainly enjoyed our travel freedom before we had kids, but I honestly feel our post-kid travel has been even more enriching. Having kids along has really helped us to embrace the Slow Travel ethos, and also allowed us to befriend people all over the world. There is nothing like a playground to help people start conversations with total strangers!

    One other nice perk of starting travel early is that the kids really become accustomed to it. Our oldest (6 yo) now just curls up with her Kindle, and the flight times zoom by. After a flight last year from Sydney to San Francisco, she woke up a few minutes before landing, and said, “that was a quick flight!”

    Hang tough, car seat-toting, vomit-covered parents of younger children – this, too, shall pass!

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