London – Learning to travel with 4 small kids

Having fun in London, beta-testing the concept of travelling with 4 small kids. We wanted to make it a challenge – if anything is to go wrong we’d rather it goes wrong on this short trip, than on the big trip after summer (we’re planning to do a 6 month round-the-world trip). So all the kids (except our youngest, 1 yrs old) got to pack & carry all of their own stuff all the way.

And no cabs or cars, which meant walking 1 km to the bus on gravel & dirt roads + a whole bunch of switching between buses, planes, subways, trains, escalators, elevators, stairs, etc, in both Stockholm and London.

It wasn’t easy, but it worked better than expected! And the kids seemed to enjoy being responsible for their own stuff. Now we feel more confident about the big trip. We also have an ever-growing list of lessons learned so far.

One clear lesson so far is that travelling with small kids is all about motivation! As long as they all WANT to come along, everything is pretty much OK. However whenever one or two don’t want to come along, then things get really difficult really quickly. So find ways to keep things fun! And always carry snacks & water.

Along the way we developed a travel slogan "häng med, håll ihop, och var glad!" which means something like "come along, stay together, and have fun!"

Here are some more photos.

7 responses on “London – Learning to travel with 4 small kids

  1. I see the kids have both a little suitcase and a small backpack, and I think that may be a bit of a problem. My experience is that sooner or later a kid is going to be too tired to carry that stuff, and then you’d better be prepared to do it yourself. With too many of those suitcases/backpacks you soon run out of hands…

    I’ve done quite a bit of backpacking with my kids, and the only times it gets stressful is if you plan poorly and end up arriving at destinations too late. After 10 pm things deteriorate quickly! Trust me…

  2. Thanks for the tips! There were some times when we had too carry some of their bags, for example Emma’s bag (she’s 3) in the escalator. Turned out that we could hang it on our big bag, we could also hang a bag or two on the baby trolley for short distances.

  3. Henrik you are the first one who has applied short iterations of agile in traveling! Nice photoes and cute kids dude ūüôā
    greetings from Tehran

  4. yes traveling with kids is all about motivation.
    Also for the parents. Lots of people with kids think it is not possible. We moved to France for 6 months and had a great time. It was one big adventure, although I was happy I had scrum master experience with removing impediments. See our new years video with pictures from our 2010: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHgQl-yly3w

  5. Any lean principles invented during this learning :). I actually started teaching my kid Kanban and putting a task board for in his room……Early Learning you see

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