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Sleep is likely the last thing on your mind when you’re planning a vacation. Instead, you’re thinking about all the things you’re going to do, all the shows you’re going to see, and all the delicious food you’re going to eat.
Even if you aren’t thinking about sleep, you should be. It is especially important if you’re traveling with young children. Even a short vacation can really mess with your sleep!
You can bet that sleeping on vacation will be different than at home, but that doesn’t mean the entire family is doomed to walk around like living zombies! Here are some tips for making sure everyone gets plenty of sleep on vacation.
Buy Tickets to Early Shows
Chances are, there is at least one show you want to catch while you’re on vacation. Whether it’s a Broadway show in New York City or you want to book one of the many dinner shows in the Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge area, it’s a good idea to consider booking an earlier show whenever you can.
An earlier show provides you with plenty of time to return to the hotel and get into bed. This is important for children, but it’s not a bad idea for adults either. Drifting off to sleep can be difficult, and giving yourself plenty of time to unwind before falling asleep can ensure you’re energized for the next day.
Book Multiple Rooms
If you’re asking how many people you can cram into a hotel room, you’re asking the wrong question. Instead, you should be asking how many rooms it will take to make sure everyone is comfortable.
Although you will save a lot of money cramming everyone into the same room, everyone’s sleep will suffer. Parents will accidentally keep the kids up when they should be sleeping, and noisy sleepers will keep everyone else from getting the shuteye they need for the next day.
Make sure you have enough money in your budget to book multiple rooms. Let the kids sleep in one with the adults in another, and consider putting grandma in her own room.
Don’t want to book multiple rooms? Consider a suite with separate sleeping areas instead!
Try and Stick to a Schedule
Getting plenty of sleep is always important, but it is especially important when you’re on vacation. The best way to do that is to try and stick to your regular sleep schedule as much as possible.
If you have to stay up a little later one night, try not to sleep in too much the next morning. That way, you’ll still be tired when it’s time to sleep the next night.
Nighttime routines are important too. If you are used to taking a bath before bed, hop in the tub in the hotel room.
If you’re traveling with the kids, bring along their favorite nighttime books so they get to read a story before they get tucked in.
There are a lot of things you can do in the hotel room to make it more comfortable. Turn the air down before you go to sleep, pull the curtains closed, and place the “Do Not Disturb” placard on your door.
You should also come equipped with the items you and your family need for a good night’s sleep. That might include:
- White noise machines or apps
- Your own pillows
- Favorite stuffed animals
- Eye masks
- Essential oil room spray
Don’t be afraid to ask the hotel for extra items that will make your sleep more comfortable too. Most are more than willing to provide you with extra pillows, blankets, and earplugs if you forgot yours.
Plan Nap Time
Naptime is a must for young children. You’ll be glad you planned extra time in the afternoon to return to the hotel room so they can get some shuteye before your evening adventure. However, it can be good for adults too.
Your vacation is actually a great time to sleep, even though you may be tempted to do and see as much as you can. Plan a break during the day, even if it means closing your eyes by the pool or laying in bed to watch a movie. You’ll feel energized for the rest of the day!
Not thinking about how you’re going to make sure everyone gets enough sleep on vacation can spell disaster. Prevent sour moods and make sure everyone gets enough shuteye with the tips on this list.
Krystle Cook – the creator of Home Jobs by MOM – put her psychology degree on a shelf and dived into a pile of diapers and dishes instead. She is a wife and mother to two rambunctious boys, sweating it out in her Texas hometown. She loves cooking, DIY home projects, and family fun activities.