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How to Travel Safely with Your Autistic Family

Updated: Mar 9

A sunset image of a Italian Village with a river flowing through the village.

Learning how to travel safely with your autistic family has most likely been at the top of your list for quite some time. When the pandemic began, I wrote a blog post about how to stay safe using proper safety precautions. At the time, it was the most important thing I could do to help families like yours when traveling. However, times have changed once again. And while those safety precautions are still relevant, there are so many other things you can do to travel safely with your autistic family. Today, I am sharing a few tips on how to travel safely now and in the future.

How to Travel Safely with Your Autistic Family

Air Travel

Air filtration and air circulation was improved on airplanes after the start of the pandemic. So, the chances of being exposed to germs are even less than in the past.

However, it is still a good idea to wipe down tray tables before using them. Using hand wipes or hand sanitizer before eating is another excellent idea to keep your family germ free.

Train Travel

If you decide to travel on a train with your autistic family, I recommend getting a sleeper car when possible. This will give you a separate space to stay in, which can be helpful if your autistic child becomes overwhelmed easily while traveling.

Car Travel

Stopping is necessary when traveling by car. Since you are traveling safely with your autistic family, you will be prepared with hand wipes, hand sanitizer, and so much more.

Of course, you will still need to go into the rest stops for the restrooms and maybe for a quick snack or meal.

Using the family restrooms while stopping can alleviate some stress while traveling by car. This will ensure your autistic child won’t panic if you are in a different stall and they can’t see you.

It may also be best to have an adult sit with the kids at a table while the other adult orders food. That way you know one adult’s full attention is on the kids while the other can handle a few distractions that include whether your child’s favorite food made it into the bag.

Wear Bright Colored Clothing

An autistic child may wander away from you while on vacation. It can happen if they get scared or overstimulated. And it can happen quickly.

One of the best ways to keep your autistic child safe, and noticeable, is to have them wear bright colored clothing. You will be able to spot them amongst all the other people in crowded areas.

I recommend that you wear the same color as your child, so they can spot you if you get separated too.

Choose Accommodations with Safety in Mind

When you are trying to travel safely with your autistic family, there are so many things to consider. At the top of your list should be where you are staying.

I recommend choosing a room, or suite, that is away from the elevators and the stairs. This makes it more difficult for your child to get too far if they happen to wander out of your room.

It is also best to stay in a room that is away from the pool and other noisy areas. This prevents overstimulation, especially during downtime or bedtime.

Have Your Autistic Child Wear ID

There are so many different forms of identification nowadays. Your autistic child may be okay wearing a bracelet, while another child may prefer a lanyard or something attached to their belt.

I recommend using the type of ID you know won’t bother your child, so they are willing to keep in on them in case of an emergency. This identification can include your contact information and other helpful information.

Since autistic children can have difficulty communicating with other people, wearing ID is an excellent way of having them reunited with you faster.

These are a few of my tips on how to travel safely with your autistic family. You may need to find other options to add to this list, depending on the needs of your autistic child. We can easily work together to ensure you have all the resources you will need to travel with your autistic family to any destination around the world. Contact me today and see how I can help you discover how travel is for everyone!

A family at a beach at sunset.  The father has a child on his back and mom is holding hands with the other children.

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