Summer Travel Tips for Children with Autism

Traveling during the summer can be fun and exciting for families! However, if you are a parent of a child with autism, travel can present unique challenges. Whether you’re heading out on a road trip or catching a flight to your destination, here are some tips to help you prepare for a smooth journey. 

1. Create a travel plan prior to your trip

Planning is important for a successful, stress-free trip. Do your research on your destination, transportation, and accommodations to familiarize yourself to reduce anxiety for you and your child. Develop a visual schedule that outlines your itinerary to help your child understand what to expect. Consult with your child’s Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) or Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) to discuss strategies to best prepare your child for the trip. 

2. Plan autism-friendly activities

Look for destinations that offer autism-friendly and sensory-friendly activities and attractions. Consider places such as aquariums, zoos, and children’s museums that are commonly known for being suitable for children with autism. Choose attractions that align with your child’s interests to spark excitement. 

3. Pack the necessities

Children with autism are often sensitive to loud noises and certain textures. Pack noise-cancelling headphones to help your child manage noisy environments and sunglasses if your child is sensitive to light. Bring toys and snacks to keep your child comfortable and entertained during the travel day. 

4. Maintain a routine

Maintaining a structured routine is often important for children with autism. Try to keep some normalcy in your child’s schedule with consistent nap times, bedtimes, and mealtimes. This will help your child feel safe and secure during your trip. 

5. Emphasize safety

Safety is a top priority for any child, especially children with autism who have tendencies to wander. There can often be confusion in new environments, so use ID bracelets, or other forms of identification that include your contact information in case your child wanders off. Teach them basic safety rules to follow. 

6. Communicate with travel providers

Many airlines, hotels, and attractions are willing to accommodate special needs if informed in advance. Contact your travel providers ahead of time to discuss your child’s specific requirements and any accommodations that will help ensure a comfortable travel experience for your family. 

By following these travel tips, you can make your summer vacation more enjoyable and less stressful. Planning and preparation can help you create lifelong memories with your family. Safe travels and enjoy your summer! 

At Surpass Behavioral Health, we are passionate about making a positive difference in the lives of our clients and families. Our focus is quality care that you can trust. We believe in our clients’ ability to achieve their goals and we want to celebrate each win together. Our mission is for our clients to be successful across a variety of settings and provide support to our families.   

Learn more about our services or find a clinic near you. 

Share on

Related Articles

ABA therapy at home with a dad and his son

How to Incorporate ABA Therapy at Home

It’s important to integrate ABA techniques in your home to support your child with autism. Explore actionable strategies for applying ABA therapy at home.