One of the fun parts of being on vacation is to eat good food. Unfortunately it´s not usually so interesting for a child to try new food. As a parent I understand your concern about your child´s eating before going on vacation. I´ll share my best tips on eating well when on vacation with kids.
Bring your own food on shorter trips
Eating out is often expensive. Bring your own food if you want to save money. Pack a picnic lunch, such as pancakes, pasta salad, sandwiches or pie. If you want to bring warm, you can purchase food thermoses. A food thermos has a large opening to make it easier for you to fill the jar with food and eat directly from it. It is ideal for storing warm soup, sausages, or food from a baby food jar that you have warmed a little extra before your excursion.
Own household – Eat well on vacation with kids
On a vacation with kids, it can be a good idea to have your own household with a small kitchen where you can prepare your own meals. It is often a lot cheaper, and it can be nice to avoid having to take young children to a restaurant. Check in advance to see what kind of kitchen equipment is available where you plan to stay and where the nearest grocery store is located. If you are going on a trip, you can prepare lunch boxes ahead of time, just like you would at home.
Restaurant with kids
A visit to a restaurant with young children can be pretty easy at times and very stressful at others. Bring a touchpad to the restaurant and give it to your child if you feel it is needed. As a parent, I know that it can be a struggle to help your child while you are eating. And it can be difficult for a child with a lot of energy to stay at the table until everyone has finished their food.
Sometimes we start by helping our children with their food, and then me and my husband can eat in peace and quiet while our kids play on their iPads. As everyone knows, quality time with parents, without a touchpad, is, of course, best for a child. However, a little use of the iPad will not harm your child, and you and the other guests at the restaurant will be just as happy as your child 😀
Share portion on the restaurant
Often, sharing an adult portion is less expensive than purchasing two child portions. Ask for an extra plate when ordering. The adult portion may even be healthier than the children’s portion, which does not often include vegetables.
It is not surprising that all-inclucive vacations are popular among families with children. All inclusive often means transportation to the destination, accommodation, food and drinks that are included in the price for the holiday. It may be nice to know that everything has already been paid. However, check in advance what is included in your all-inclusive package, as it often differs between the hotels.
Bottled drinking water
In Sweden and some other countries, you get clean tap water. However, in other countries, you should avoid drinking tap water. It can be quite costly to purchase drinking water for the whole family. Instead, buy a large bottle of drinking water at the supermarket, and then small water bottles that you can refill from the big bottle. Remember, however, to change the small bottles every now and then so you do not get a stomach ache, as bacteria can grow in them after a while.
Are you worried about what your child shall eat on your vacation?
You don’t have to worry; children don’t starve. The child will find something to eat from what you serve, whether it is something nice from your dish or something specially prepared for them. It is not dangerous if your child eats pasta och French fries for two weeks. It is often possible to find bananas or other fruits that your child can eat if he/she does not eat enough food. Bring a lot of fruits with you when you go on excursions; they are good as between-meals snack and also as a supplement if your child doesn’t eat much.
You can buy biscuits or nuts from a local shop and always have them in your carry-on bag at all times. You will see that maybe your child will find a local delicacy that becomes their favorite dish during your holiday.
Sometimes we have carried baby food jars during our vacations. At the end of the vacation, it turns out that we have half of the children’s food left over, since our child ate the local food. Usually, baby food jars are available to buy in the local pharmacy or grocery store at your destination. However, it may not taste exactly the same as it does at home.
Here we forgot Judith’s plastic plate, and the porcelain plate just wanted to fall to the floor. Judith was preoccupied for a long time with picking small pieces of food into her mouth. (We cleaned her tray before and after with decinfection.)
Do you want to know how to make a flight with children go more smoothly. Read my article Flying with children.