Here’s another episode of #FamiliesOutside and today we are interviewing Keri from Baby Globetrotters.
1. Give us a short background of your family.
We are a family of five with three young children – 5, 3 and just turned 1. Originally from Australia, my husband and I spent many years ‘doing the London thing’ and travelling to Europe every spare weekend before kids came along. We thought we were ready to head back home after the Olympics in 2012 and start living a more settled life in my home town of Perth, but then the next adventure began – hubby was offered a job in Abu Dhabi, UAE. We love living I this central hub of the world and know for sure we are destined to be an expat family!
2. Do you travel full time or part time? When did you start and why?
We never stopped travelling in our spare time after we had kids; though things did slow down a lot (I had terrible morning sickness with my first two!). My husband works full time so we can only travel abroad when he has leave, but we also get a lot of public holidays in the UAE so we’re able to squeeze in lots of long weekends as well whenever we can. We are on the road or in the air about two months of the year, with the hottest part of the year back home in Australia.
3. How do you afford to travel as a family? Do you also work on the road?
As my husband still works full time, this pays for our adventures. I would love to be in a situation one day where we could travel for several months at a time and not have to worry about our normal financial responsibilities but that would mean leaving our expat home which we love. I try to switch off for the most part while we are travelling, but things like twitter and Instagram which only take minutes to update are great on the road (when you get wifi!)
4. How do you plan out your trips (and for full time travelers, are you always out or do you have days where you just stay in)? Do you particularly choose those “family-friendly” or “kid-friendly” destinations or are you flexible and just simply adapt to the place?
We do a mixture of both purpose planned family holidays as well as travel and adventures that we want to have ourselves. All of our travel needs to be adapted of course to include the needs of small children – but in fact some of the spontaneous city break type trips have actually turned out the best! When the kids are a little older we will no doubt take more advantage of resorts with kids club and the like so we finally get a relaxing break too.
5. What is that one item you can never travel without when you are with kids?
Wet wipes! Undoubtedly it will be years before I ditch these from my handbag, they are just so useful!
6. There are varied opinions when it comes to learning while traveling VS. formal schooling. What is your stand on this? Does travelling really give an advantage to your kid’s education, based on experience?
Traveling while on the road is a perfectly valid form of education. I’m not sure I would do this on a long term basis, only because I have no teaching qualification myself and although they can experience life on the road, I wouldn’t want them to fall behind their peers on base curriculum.
Just like a gap year though, wouldn’t it be great if all kids took some time during their primary years to learn and experience through travel rather than in the classroom? I do hope somewhere along the line we can do this when the kids are at the right age (don’t ask me exactly what age this is just yet – my little ones are only at the start of formal schooling).
7. What advice would you give to families who want to start out a travelling lifestyle?
I think you need to be prepared for the unexpected and be financially able; you will not get much enjoyment out of the experience if you are constantly worried about cash. But don’t just dream about it, start planning and do it!
8. Where else can we guys read about your family adventures?
Not just the blog, we also update our story through social media daily too, you can find us on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter. I’m also an avid Pinner, you will find loads of ideas about family travel and expat life on our Pinterest Boards and I’m a contributor for Bub Hub in Australia and just joined the Traveling Mom team.
#FamiliesOutside is an interview series to help encourage families to go out and explore places, near or far.
Bi-monthly Weekly, we feature families who love travelling – full-time or part-time – or who simply love including the outdoors in their daily activities.