How to Guarantee Your Child with Special Needs Has the Perfect Camping Trip
If you’re the parent of a child with special needs, the idea of a camping or RV trip might seem worlds away.
Traveling with a special needs child obviously requires preparation and great attention to detail, but this is especially true when you’re trying to enjoy the great outdoors together.
Regardless of your child’s handicap or disability, don’t assume that you can’t camp or take part in a traditional outdoor vacation. Although it might take some legwork on your part, allowing your child to experience nature could be truly life-changing as kids of all walks of life should strive to spend more time outdoors.
To help parents looking to take that perfect outdoor vacation, we’ve laid out five tips to help make your next camping trip a reality with a special needs child in tow.
Check Your Campsites Beforehand
Not all campsites are created equal in terms of comfort and accommodations. Ask explicitly before booking whether or not your ideal campsite has specific arrangements for people with special needs. For example, wheelchair access and private bathrooms might be your top priorities to ensure that your child is effectively able to get around and feel comfortable.
Figure Out Your Sleeping Arrangement
For those traveling as a family, you need to keep in mind how you’re going to effectively fit your family at your campground while still giving everyone space.
For special needs children, tents may be out of the question either due to personal space issues or the fact that there’s simply not enough room for everyone in a single spot. As such, an RV may be the ideal balance between enjoying the outdoors while still having some space and the comforts of home.
Sites like Outdoorsy can help you find RV rentals to help accommodate families of all types, ensuring that you have all the right amenities based on your child’s needs.
Pick the Right Activities
Rather than book a ton of activities that you’re not sure your child would be comfortable with, instead consider basic fun activities that you can actually practice at home. You don’t necessarily need to stick to a certain schedule when you can hike, sightsee and simply enjoy nature at your own pace.
As always, also take your child’s feedback into consideration and ask them what they want to do rather than assuming what they are and aren’t capable of.
Don’t Leave Them in the Dark
Safety should be a top priority of any parent going on a camping trip. Flashlights and headlamps are essential for both keeping an eye on your child during nighttime and ensuring that they don’t feel intimidated by the dark.
Bring Along Your Child’s Must-Haves
Finally, bringing along toys, books and other familiar items from home can help curb feelings of homesickness. Likewise, having these items along for your adventure will help entertain them during any downtime during your trip.
Just because you have a special needs child as part of your family doesn’t mean that you have to neglect the great outdoors. You and your child can have a total blast adventuring together, granted you take the proper steps to prepare. By following these tips, you can get started on making vacation memories that you’ll never forget.