Whether your child is visiting family elsewhere, or they are ready to take their first solo trip abroad, the idea of them going alone can be terrifying for most parents. so educating their safety is a must, here are some of the best parenting tips for solo teen travel.
As your child gets excited about their adventure, you are left to do most of the worrying. Is it safe for my teen to travel alone? What do they need to pack? How can I keep them safe? You will likely have a million and one different thoughts, but to help, we are sharing 4 tips to make things easier for you and your teen.
Tips for Solo Teen Travel
1. Encourage communication
When your child is getting ready to head off on their own, do not just assume they have got it all covered – even if they say they have. Although you should not swaddle them until they leave, it is good to ensure that they have everything they might need.
For your own peace of mind, try to show them you trust them but want to know they are safe and encourage them to check in along the way. Some parents ask their kids to call or text on an evening – just so they can go to sleep knowing they are okay! Even the most adventurous of kids should not struggle too much to stay in touch.
If you know your child will forget to check-in, get following them on socials! No teen will be able to resist documenting their travels for their followers, so make sure you are one of them! This will likely give you a little more insight into what they are eating, who they are with, and where they are going.
2. Discuss no go zones
If it is your child’s first visit to another state, county, or country, do plenty of research together beforehand to set down some ground rules. Areas that are obviously dangerous should be highlighted as no-gos.
That said, make sure the research is fun. By taking part in planning they’re itinerary with them, you will likely have more insight into the things they are planning to get up to.
3. Set up ICE contacts
ICE (in case of emergencies) are the contact someone can call if your child runs into trouble. Kids these days go from calling you ‘mum’ and ‘dad’ to your full, real names pretty fast – meaning it might not be obvious who their parents are in their contact list. Putting ICE at the beginning of the family contacts will work as additional protection and peace of mind.
4. Note down their travel plans
This goes without saying, but if you are not traveling to the airport with them, make sure to take note of all the travel details. For reassurance, you might want to suggest driving them to the airport, so you know they have arrived or let them take the car rather than relying on public transport. Car parking Newark Airport and beyond is much more affordable than it used to be, and it means they will be able to get home quickly and safely when they land.
While letting your teenager go on holiday – whether alone or with friends – for the first time can be daunting, they will appreciate the freedom. Nobody is expecting you to be super chill while they are away, but giving them the chance to be independent, explore and have fun will be a great way for both of you to take your trust and bond to the next level.