Introduced by a good friend, I had the privilege of meeting Jordan Rhodes, the creator of the website Glimpse Guides. The website shares Jordan’s travel finds, reports on current fashion for children and adults, and provides a wide variety of travel tips for families. It is a great resource when booking trips with kids. (She also featured my tips on traveling in Paris… take a look here). As a mother of two (with the third on the way!), Jordan manages to visit, write, and post inspirational and helpful content — thank you so much!
How did you come about creating a blog about traveling with children?
I’ve always loved traveling and I always had friends asking me where they should go. So a travel blog has been at the back of my mind for a long time, but I needed to find a niche to differentiate myself from others. When my daughter was born three years ago, I realized I didn’t know what restaurants in NYC were kid-friendly, and I dine there all the time, living just outside of the city. Suddenly I found my calling. Although instead of a blog, it turned into more of a resource with the emergence of actual guides. These days I’m working on more posts, but I’ve just launched a city guides app on iTunes, so that takes up quite a bit of time (check it out by searching Glimpse Guides – all proceeds go to charities.) Someday I hope it’s a proper blog with daily posts.
How did you become interested in traveling? (sounds like a boring question, but I am intrigued by people’s experiences with traveling the world!)
My parents were a great influence on me growing up. They realized the importance of travel for a child (or anyone, really), and made sure we grew up seeing different cultures and ways of life. Each one of their four kids has lived abroad at some point (Europe, Africa and Asia), which I think is a testament to their influence, and they even had a rule that we were not allowed to go to college in-state. That forced us to leave behind what we had always known and open our eyes to new things.
Where have you traveled with your kids? What has been your most memorable trip?
We have traveled to dozens of places across Europe and the U.S. My kids are very young (4 and 3, and baby number three is due in January), so the rest of the world is a bit of a stretch right now, but I feel so excited to have years and years of travel before us. My favorite trip so far was to London for the holidays two years ago. We stayed at The Connaught where they handed out presents on Christmas Day and we took carriage rides through Mayfair. It was truly magical, and the kids somehow managed to be on their best behavior. I think they were just as enchanted as we were. Another great memory was taking our daughter to Scotland for the first time. Her name is actually Scotland and when we walked through customs, the agent got a big kick out of that.
Do you get nervous about long flights / time changes / cultural differences? What is your advice to parents traveling abroad with young kids?
I was definitely nervous the first time but now I feel like a pro. I always make sure to book flights way in advance so I can get the seats I want. Airlines also have a limited number of bassinets, so you need to purchase early in order to reserve them, if needed. We’re also loyal to one airline (Delta – I rely on the free snacks for the kids!), which is really helpful for upgrades and booking business class with miles earned. Strollers are also a necessity. As for time change and cultural differences, I’ve learned that kids are resilient and pretty much only need one night to adjust when going to Europe (ask me again after a trip to Asia.) Mine are also too young to understand cultural differences, but I hope that by the time they’re old enough to realize, they’ll be very open-minded individuals.
What are your go to “items” for airline travel with kids?
I always buy new, cheap toys for every trip and pull them out every now and then as “special presents,” so they never get bored. These could be anything from books to crayons to chocolate to games. I stock up at our local pharmacy before a trip. I’m not opposed to lots of snack food on long flights either, because well-fed kids are happy kids. And I think we’re lucky to live in a world with iPads, which provides them with hours of movies and app time (although I only let the kids use iPads on airplanes so that they never tire of them.)
Where do you want to travel next with your family?
We are on pause waiting for their little sister to get here, but starting in February we have trips planned to Turks & Caicos, Disney World, Aspen, Arizona and a European trip this summer. If anyone has other suggestions I always love to hear them!
How do you research before your trips?
Town&Country, Departures and Condé Nast Travel magazines are all great. Instagram is such a great resource and I follow museums and other bloggers, as well as most of the fashion crowd – Derek Blasberg is one of my favorites and he’s very revealing! I also rely heavily on word-of-mouth, and feel lucky to have fab, jet-setting friends giving me advice.
Are you a planner when traveling or more impromptu / spontaneous?
I am SUCH a planner, to the point where I have everything typed up by the hour, and a list of my outfits and my kids’ outfits for each day. But it saves tons of room in our suitcases for purchases abroad, and just like in all aspects of parenting, kids need structure! That may sound crazy, but I think it’s why travel has been so enjoyable for us as a family.
Thank you, Jordan. To follow along on Instagram @glimpseguides or visit www.glimpseguides.com for more posts on all your travel dreams and tips. It makes me want to take the kids abroad more often and pass on the love of traveling!