Traveling can be a headache—itineraries, tickets, IDs—and it doesn’t take much to derail a well-planned trip. Yet traveling with kids can take on a whole new slew of issues. You know not to forget the itineraries, tickets, and IDs, but what else do you need? Here’s a list to keep you sane pre-flight. Don’t panic! You can order a birth certificate online and save yourself the worry!
Documents, Documents, Documents!
Just like that saying “location, location, location,” the number-one traveling rule is don’t forget the documents! Whether you’re traveling internationally or just within the country, proper identification is absolutely crucial. For adults, a simple driver’s license or passport should suffice, but, when traveling with toddlers, it can get a bit more complicated.
If you’re traveling as the solo parent, you’ll need not just your child’s birth certificate but also a passport (for international travel) and a child travel consent form. This form tells agents at the gate that you have permission from the other parent to travel with your child. Without this consent form, you may be stopped from boarding the plane. If your spouse/the child's’ other parent is deceased, you may be required to show proof of his or her death.
While a consent form is not a legal requirement, it can help avoid delays. Consent forms are highly encouraged, as the increase of child abductions and human trafficking has become a larger concern and, if your child is adopted or there are unusual circumstances about your guardianship, your form shows you have the right to take the child where you’re going, and this can only make your trip a smoother process.
What if you don’t have the proper ID? If you and your child will be crossing any borders, you both will need a valid passport. However, if traveling on a road trip within the country, you only need your child’s birth certificate.
What Else to Pack?
With your documents squared away, you’re free to pack all the rest—and it’s a good idea to make a list! The last thing you want to forget is your child’s favorite toy. Here’s a great packing list for kids, that you can alter as you need to:
Whether you’re traveling with toddlers or traveling with a baby, your best bet for a smooth trip is to plan well in advance and be prepared. If you need the most crucial of documents—a birth certificate—be sure to order one from FastBirthCertificates.com and have a stress-free family vacation!