I’m taking my child on holiday for the first time, what do I need to know?

    Many tour operators offer family-specific packages with great facilities to make your holiday more relaxing, including services such as babysitting and childcare services. It is worth finding out what services are available in your resort, this could help you plan ahead.

    Before you go

    Pre book a cot for your hotel or appartment, make sure you let your travel company know at the time of booking.

    Check that your accommodation has a fridge in the room; minibars can come into their own here for storing prepared bottles and baby food. Self-catering is often a very good bet, with fridges and cooking facilities en suite.

    If you're planning on going to a very hot country make sure that your hotel has air-conditioning; otherwise babies can find it very difficult to fall asleep.

    ABTA tip

    Take a cotton sleep suit to protect your baby against insect bites. It’s best to avoid taking a baby to an area where there are lots of mosquitoes.

    While you're away

    Keep little ones out of the sun during the hottest part of the day. If you’re in a hot climate, follow the locals’ example and head off for a long, leisurely lunch, in the shade between one and three in the afternoon.

    Use the highest factor sunscreen and remember that sun can penetrate through clouds particularly in tropical countries.

    Put your child in swimming nappies when they are using the pool, “accidents” can happen and this can be disruptive for holidaymakers and hoteliers.

    Keep your baby properly hydrated. Both you and they will need to take on considerably more fluid in hotter countries.

    ABTA tip

    If you have to leave your baby alone for an evening use the babysitting service; family friendly tour operators will be more likely to offer it, and also ensure that the service has been properly vetted.

    Better still take them with you; the waiters will be very happy to see him or her.

    Next steps