When I first started even talking about life on the road, my biggest concern was always first and foremost, keeping my kids safe in crowds. It was on the top of both our concerns. So after extensive mom research and digging deep into my helicopter style parenting realm, I’ve come up with a few things to help keep your little ones safe while traveling in busy places.
-ASSIGN KIDS TO ADULTS:
This is the one we use every time we go out anywhere. Assigning our girls to us makes it easier for me personally because I don’t have to worry about “mother hen” herding my kids through busy streets or attractions. All we have to do is say “You take so and so and I’ll take this one” that way we’re responsible for that one kid or however many you're assigned. You’re in charge of that one or however many assigned to you and that’s it. Our kids know to stick with that parent, and don’t let go of their hand.
-ALWAYS TAKE A PRESENT PICTURE:
This one is relatively easy for all parents now a days considering how easy it is to snap a billion photos of your kids throughout the day. But sometimes in the rush to get somewhere or “no phone time” policies, it’s a good idea to snap a picture before you head out the door. Make sure to get what they're wearing, how their hair is, and clear photo of their face. Just to have in case you ever have to find them (scary to think I know).
-TEACH THEM YOUR CELL NUMBER:
Sometimes this can be tricky for littler ones. I know confidently, my 7 year old knows my phone number. My five year old has it all down but the area code (we’re working on it). But whether it's a memory game or how ever to get them to memorize it, is always helpful. If they’re too young to remember it or just having trouble, there is always the back up of writing it somewhere on them or discretely on their clothes.
-TALK TO THEM ABOUT CROWD SAFETY:
Something as simple as talking with them about how to stay safe in busy crowds helps tremendously. When we tell our kids “stay close” if we're in a busy area, they know exactly what to do. Not out of fear, but simply because we are open with our girls about how to have fun but always be aware of whats going on around them. We talk about finding a safe spot or how if they get lost to find a Mom with kids or person of authority in uniform to ask for help, and it makes a world of difference we’re out doing touristy things.
Going out and exploring the world doesn’t have to be a terrifying thing when you have kids,
As long as you're smart about it. One thing I’ve learned is the age old wisdom of trusting your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, I don’t do it. Another tip: don’t become distracted with your phone, camera, GoPro, whatever. Always be present and aware with your kids. We have great memories with our kids because we all follow simple guidelines of staying safe. So get out there and explore.
About the Author:
Melissa Flammia is the "Hippie" from Hippie and the Tech. A Fulltime RV Family traveling with their two girls.