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Holidays abroad with a child with sn. Any tips or recommendations appreciated:)

(16 Posts)
Blossomhill Wed 05-Jan-05 17:26:16

We are going to brave taking dd abroad this year (first 2 weeks in August) as feel she could dope with it now. The past 5 years there was no way we could have chanced it!
The main concern I have is the flight and the accomodation. Now the accomodation would have to be self catering appartments and I'd want something quite big and spacious. There is no way I'd want to risk taking her to a hotel.
The flight is another worry (I have this nightmare that dd would refuse to get on) but are the airlines quite helpful, understanding?
Anyway I've rambled enough but any help or advice would be very gratefully received. Thanks Blossomhillxxx

Blu Wed 05-Jan-05 17:59:48

Blossom - have NO experience of this, but I would expect the flight could be a nightmare, and it would be a case of grit teeth and endure - after all, you can get somewhere v nice in 2 hrs. Alternatively, could you take a ferry to Northern Spain? It's v nice around Santander where the ferry from the s coast goes to, I hear, - and you could take your own car to drive to accommodation. Or, I think the Eurostar trains extend a quick service to the South of France in summer. Though the journeys would be longer, it might be les stressful to take her on a ferry or train?
Just a thought...

Blu Wed 05-Jan-05 18:01:06

And no, IME, the charter flights used for most holidays are not at all helpful or understanding ;(

Blu Wed 05-Jan-05 18:02:14

Oh, shit, that all sounded really discouraging, didn't it? Sorry - I think it's GREAT you are planning to go abroad, and once you get the right plans sorted, it will be fantastic

onlyjoking9329 Wed 05-Jan-05 18:06:58

we have been abroad 5 times now with our three, if we can then you can, i would suggest getting a villa we did it in nov and it was much better having more space and a pool, you can get appartments but depends how many of you cos mostly 2 bedrooms, you are welcome to CAT me if you have more questions, where you thinking of going?

Blossomhill Wed 05-Jan-05 18:08:43

Thanks OnlyJoking. We were thinking of going to Spain. So is the villa private and the pool use as well. Does it work out more expensive? How many questions have I asked. Would you prefer if I cat'd you?

onlyjoking9329 Wed 05-Jan-05 18:10:36

you are welcome to cat me or chat on msn

Blossomhill Wed 05-Jan-05 18:11:21

Thanks onlyjoking. My msn isn't working, not sure why!

onlyjoking9329 Wed 05-Jan-05 18:14:28

we have been to paris, fuerturventura and lanzarote three times, guess which is fav! we got a villa throu
i can recommend them very good

maddiemo Wed 05-Jan-05 19:32:23

The biggest problem we have on holiday is sleep.

Ds3 is very unsettled and finds it hard to wind down.

We have done Spain by car. It was good for ds3 but I had to close my eyes for some of dh driving.

Our favourite place is Disneyland Paris.

Ds3 loves it, which amazes me as he cannot cope with a school fair but seems fine at eurodisney. We stay at The Davvy Crocket. I would not go in the school holidays though.

jacjay Wed 05-Jan-05 20:18:30

we take our children abroad every year and have done since they were babies and its fine aslong as you take enough things to keep them occupied you will be fine. Hope youe have a fab time and have a little time to treat your self to a little sun bathing.

JaysMum Wed 05-Jan-05 20:47:09

We go abroad every year....but always to the same two places....starting to believe that maybe J is not the only one in our household on the spectrum as both hubby and I hate change!!!!

We go to visit family in Italy...nice short flight and a cheap holiday for us as we use the family villa and have sole occupancy and use of a pool. No way would I imagine going to a hotel...I couldn't stand being tied down to meal times.
James villas, as mentioned before, do some really lovely places and most have their own private pool. You can be so much more relaxed because you dont have anyone else sat nearby giving you those funny stares when your little one is not conforming!!!
We also go to a little desert island of the coast of Africa. We go here because no one else does!!!! Nice and quiet and very restfull...until we arrive!!!!The locals have become our friends and they all accept J for who he is and not his condition.
The flight is a bit of a nightmare beforehand because J is convinced the aircraft does not have enough fuel, is going to crash or is going to explode mid air!!!!
I contacted the airline we fly with and explained that J had concerns about flying. They were ace and sent us a video explaining how the plane stays up in the air, what happens on the plane, showed what the cockpit looked like and explained the trollie dollies role on the craft.
I would think seriously about what time of the year you go away. August is the busiest time, so in our experience we found staff not able to have the time to be so understanding.It is also hotter and you may find this causes problems with sleeping, eating etc.
June is a lovely time. A lot quieter and still hot enough to get a good tan. Plus it's a lot cheaper if you go out of main season.
Hope you have a fab time wherever you decide to go.

Blossomhill Wed 05-Jan-05 21:33:46

Thanks Jaysmum

As usual you give such good advice . I am seriously re-considering the August slot as I think it may be a bit too much. The thing is ds has his SATS this year so I doubt they'll let me take him out for a week off!

Davrosthesnowwoman Wed 05-Jan-05 22:20:28

We've only been on holiday once in 7 years and that was becuase we had a live-in au-pair for 6 mos when DD was borbn last year and she came with us. Our issues were DS's behaviour/reaction to the unknown esp airport and flight, finding ourselves somewhere that just wasn't safe or private enough (he can open and get out of any door, window etc) and basically it just not being a holiday for us at all as we would be doing all the same things and having the same issues (maybe worse) but not at home where we know our way around. I think your DD sounds like she might be more manageable and/or predictable.... I don't know. I don't want to put you off but I'd plan very carefully. The other reason we went away last year was becuase it was to somewhere a friend had been with her DS with ASD and she told us everything about it, e.g. shutters on the windows, locks on inside doors, access to bathrooms etc etc. I have lots of friends who go away regularly with children with SN/ASD and lots who don't...../

dizzyone Wed 05-Jan-05 22:41:45

I have not been on here for a long time but have just started looking here again a couple of days ago, so hope you dont mind me joining in as this thread caught my eye. Last September, me, dh and 3 children, dd3 has ASD went abroad for the first time to a Greek island. Was very worried about how dd3 would cope with the noise, crowds, aeroplane heat etc but she managed really well. We booked the airline seats at the time of booking to guarantee seating together. We were allowed to board first and settle before everyone else boarded and there was no problem with taking her huge cuddly toy dog on board. We went half board so that we could both keep an eye on her without having to shop/cook food etc. The hotel staff were lovely and as we went end of September the weather was not too hot and also not that busy. Other holiday makers were all very friendly and no-one seemed to take any notice or mind when it became too much for dd3 and she had her 'moments'. All in all a fab holiday and we are going away again next year, hope you will be able to too.

JakB Thu 06-Jan-05 09:41:20

Heh Blossom, sorry to hijack, we are planning exact same thing. Want to go away for first time since DD was five months old. We're thinking Spain and a villa but NOT a pool as I would not be able to relax for a second! Like Davros, DD is quite erratic and quite capable of opening doors etc so will have to be well planned. But we are very lucky in that DD's therapist who is also her link carer is coming with us and link is funding her. Otherwise, it would be just too stressful. DD's therapist's sister works for Heathrow and says that most of the airlines are very helpful and will let children with SN go and visit a plane in advance, board first etc. Will do some investigations into who's best etc... Good luck!

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