Moving long distance is challenging for many people, but it can be especially tough on children. Kids are often invested in their school and extracurricular activities, and the thought of leaving their friends behind and having to start fresh can be overwhelming. Fortunately, here are 5 secrets to make moving long distance with kids easier.
Breaking the News: Focus on the Positive
Once your moving plans are solid, it’s time to break the news to your kids. Don’t be surprised if they’re upset – they’re likely to mourn the loss of their home or friends they’ve made, especially if this is their first big move. Encourage your children to express their fears and focus your conversation on the positive aspects, such as fun activities in your new neighborhood, that might make them more excited about the move.
Packing Up: Delay Packing The Favorite Toys
Seeing their belongings get packed away in boxes can be confusing for young children. If possible, delay packing their favorite toys and clothes until a day or two before the move to maintain a sense of normalcy.
You can also include them in the process. Let your child write their name on their boxes or personalize them with drawings. Turn packing into a game that motivates little ones to stay involved in the move. If your kids are very young or need extra attention, consider asking friends and neighbors to babysit them while you focus on packing.
Hitting the Road: Entertainment, Food and Rest Stops
Once everything’s packed and on the moving truck, it’s time to begin the long journey to your new home. If you’ve ever taken a road trip with your kids, you may have an idea of what to expect. The keys to a successful cross-country drive include:
- Entertainment – Prevent boredom and sibling arguments with technology to keep your kids engaged. If your vehicle isn’t equipped with DVD players, buy a portable device and hook it up to headphones to keep your drive distraction-free. If you have internet access, your kids can play games on a smartphone or tablet, or even look up places to explore in your new city. If you’d rather limit screen time, get your kids involved in fun car activities, like license plate bingo, coloring books or word searches.
- Food – Pack a cooler with healthy snacks, such as baby carrots and sliced grapes, and bottled water. Put it in the backseat so your kids can grab food without needing you to pull over to assist. If you plan on eating out, research kid-friendly restaurants along your route.
- Rest stops – Take frequent restroom breaks and let your kids get their energy out for a few minutes. If you have time, plan your trip around fun or historical attractions along the way. National parks and even tourist traps can make the road trip more fun and allow your family to see something you may never get to experience again.
Unpacking and Starting Fresh
After days spent in the car, you’re finally at your new home. Let your kids look around, pick their bedrooms and check out the backyard. Introduce your children to the neighbor kids to cultivate new friendships. If you’re moving in the summer, consider enrolling your kids in extracurricular activities to help them get connected to their new community before the school year starts.
For children who are struggling to adjust, try to keep familiar routines in place. Stick to a regular bedtime schedule, host family movie nights each Friday or continue your Sunday morning pancake tradition.
Easing the Transition
Starting at a new school can be stressful. Make this transition easier for your kids by talking them through what to expect. Ask them about any fears and what they’re most excited about. If you can, tour the school with them to find their classrooms and maybe even meet their teachers.
Help your child make new friends if they’re having trouble. Encourage them to join after-school sports or clubs to meet new people, and practice any skills they might need to introduce themselves.
Ensure a Smooth Move With Union Transfer & Storage in Asheville, NC
Moving cross-country with kids requires careful planning. Utilizing movers who are committed to sticking to schedules and have a reputation for getting all of a family’s belongings to their new home safely can make the process a lot easier for parents to manage.
That’s where Union Transfer & Storage comes in. We have extensive experience moving families long distance, including internationally. You can trust our team to deliver your items in the best shape possible and make the process easy for you. Call (828) 209-0171 today for your quote.