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When travelling to another country, what are some of the things you should do with your kids to make sure they don't go into complete culture shock?

Are there any games, activities, or lessons that I would need to teach my little ones before taking them travelling internationally? How did you prepare your kids for going abroad? For instance, how would you explain the caste system to them from India? You know.... things like that?

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momof2redhedz

Asked by momof2redhedz at 3:42 PM on Mar. 30, 2011 in Travel

Level 17 (4,510 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • I wonder if you could find an educational documentary that would be appropriate to explain about different cultures and how every one does things differently from one another and how special that is.
    Kword

    Answer by Kword at 3:48 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

  • I think it depends on ages of said children. You can find activities online regarding culture shock. If they are young it really won't matter. If they are older you can tell them basic manners are key, don't stare. Bring your own food if you can. Basic stuff, crackers, little things like the premade tuna salad/chicken salad. That way if the kids get too freaked out there is something at the hotel they can and will eat. And tell them they don't have to finish it but they atleast have to try it. *keeping in mind allergies* Food would be my biggest concern. You can go to NYC or Dallas or San Francisco and have culture shock its all in the eyes of the beholder but food is my biggest issue bc you never know whats in it or what it is unless you go to a chain or a "real" restaurant kwim? street food makes the experience whole, but its also a tough road to travel, esp with kids. Good luck!
    HTMommy

    Answer by HTMommy at 3:55 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

  • I think a good idea BEFORE you go would be to educate them on what it is like in the country. Find story books that can make it fun, do online searches do whatever just make sure you introduce the culture to them before you get there.
    punkomama08

    Answer by punkomama08 at 3:58 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

  • I think culture shock is much more of a problem for grownups than it is for kids because so many things in our own culture are still a novelty for them and their thought patterns are not as rigid yet. Just let them know that everything will be different, from the food to the ways people get around to the daily routines. Do research together on what to expect while travelling there. There are lots of good kids travel guides for various countries that you could start with.
    riotgrrl

    Answer by riotgrrl at 4:30 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

  • Also agreed with HTMommy. My biggest issue with travelling with kids was with my oldest and them not having 'any of my favorites!' as far as food. He was a good sport at first, but got homesick for his regular diet quickly. A bag of favorite snacks helps a lot.
    riotgrrl

    Answer by riotgrrl at 4:32 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

  • Make sure they get sleep! Then feed them and everything else will fall into place. Depends on the age and where you're going. If you're heading to Paris, it's fine. But India or Africa....much different.
    jeanclaudia

    Answer by jeanclaudia at 5:12 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

  • We did not take them to developing countries (aside from Cabo San Lucas) until they were teens. Europe, Canada, Downunder were all fine because they were similar enough to home. FWR, our kids are just very adaptable and easy going and LOVE to travel. My daughter is moving back to South America in April to work, and my son is going to study in So Africa at the University of Cape Town in the summer and fall terms-

    Sisteract

    Answer by Sisteract at 11:24 PM on Mar. 30, 2011

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