4 People who can help you prepare for your vacation.

Team Of Business People Working Together On A LaptopWe are not talking here of the obvious people like your travel agent (you expected us to say that, didn’t you?) or Guest Services (airline, cruise line or hotel). This is, after all, the travel and hospitality industry and our/their entire job is to help you. We are speaking of some people that you might not otherwise think of.

Your child’s physician. You shouldn’t need a doctor’s note for requests like a room in a quiet location because your child doesn’t do well with loud/strange noises or you want a room that is well away from food establishments air vents because your child doesn’t like strange smells.  Your request should be good enough on its own.

Where you will need help is with things like a note saying that an EpiPen® is medically necessary or that medications in liquid form need to be in containers above the 3 oz limit. In fact, if your child has pretty much any co-occurring medical condition, you may want to tell their doctor about your plans in order to anticipate needs while you are away.

Your child’s Special Ed teacher. This is somebody that should know your child well and understand how they deal with new situations. We’ve had Special Ed teachers ask us for pictures of a destination so that they could help by preparing a visual story. Ask your child’s teacher if they could do this for you.

You might also ask them to build something into your child’s studies in advance. Can they make your trip relevant to social studies? Can they relate it to new people and different cultures? Can it be related to their history lessons? That’s distinctly possible for some locations. Think, for instance, if your trip includes Washington, DC.

If your child’s teacher is willing and prepared to help, the sky is the limit. (Pardon the pun.)

If your child has an Adaptive Phys Ed program, talk to the teacher/coach that works with your child. Tell them about recreational activities at your destination and ask them to be involved in preparing your child for those.

Your child’s behavior therapist. One of the biggest concerns that parents voice to us is the fear that their child will have a meltdown caused by an unforeseen event/situation. Your behavior therapist knows your child. If you walk them through all of your plans, they should be able to help you prepare in advance. That preparation may involve how to avoid some situations or how to deal with other situations as they arise.

Maybe the therapist needs to find out more about particular elements of the trip. Does this have HIPPA implications? Are they allowed to have a conversation with your travel agent or the guest services desk at your hotel? Ultimately, HIPPA compliance is a matter for them. That said, there is no reason for them to disclose information to the service provider about your child. They should be able to ask as many questions as they need to and still not contravene any regulations.


Your child’s music and/or art therapist. To an extent, the thoughts here are much like those for a Special Ed teacher. If your child does music therapy, can the therapist suggest music/iPad apps or anything else that might help?( Do be aware that even if they recommend that your child plays the cymbals to pass the time on your flight, that other passengers may not share that opinion!)

If you child does art therapy, can the therapist suggest some easily transportable art supplies that your child can use? If your child’s teacher couldn’t or wouldn’t help with a visual story for the trip, it is possible that an art therapist could do this for you.


In summary. You have many/some/just a few supports at home. To the extent that you have them, try to engage them in your plans. Your child is still your child whether they are at home or half-way around the globe. And, of course, ask your travel agent for help. That’s always a good thing.


  1. dorinda barletta says

    The next time we book a vacation I will call you –


  1. […] story that will help to prepare your child for some of the changes to come? See our prior posting 4 people who can help you prepare for your vacation for some thoughts on […]

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