Traveling with Children - Tokyo, Japan - part 1, The Planning


Japan is possibly S and my favourite place in the whole World together. We have both traveled, S far more extensively than I having grown up a British citizen and Air Force brat, but there is something magical and mystical and oh so fun about Japan. We spent our honeymoon there, complete with the biggest earthquake ever felt and we traveled back again 6 months after the EQ to finish said honeymoon that was cut short.

I've dreamed of heading back ever since our last visit but 2 children under 4, a mortgage, renovations, work etc and the timing (and finances) was just never right. Until a few weeks ago when Jetstar had one of their amazing flight sales. I saw the advertisement and ran some dates for fun. When the results returned that the 4 of us could fly to Tokyo return for under $1,600 incl. baggage, I text S and it went a little some thing like 'Ummmm how much do we have to spare right now? Japan for 4 of us $1,566' complete with shocked emoji and a screenshot of my summary.
We went back and forth with dates for a few texts and then he sent the magic words, 'Just do it' ... I may have cried happy tears.

We always said Japan would be a perfect place to holiday with children, even when we were there honeymooning and now we are actually going. We are both so excited at the prospect of making some unforgettable memories with our boys and to be sharing our love of this beautiful country with them.

Of course I now can't think of anything else and have gone into overdrive with my planning ... we also filled E in on the excitement and I'm not sure now if he or I will last the 6 months till we go, especially after we also mentioned the magic word 'Disneyland'. I've had to make a countdown calendar for the poor kid to cross off daily with pictures of airplanes, Disney, Mt Fuji etc on the days of our travel.

I'm having so much fun researching a family holiday and have learnt so much more about Japan that we never even came across on our previous trips. I've already worked out a basic itinerary (that includes 3 days at Disney of course) and have lists a mile long of things to do and places to see. The only painful part is booking accommodation at the moment as you can't book more than 6 months out for most places in Japan so I'm watching the calendar carefully so we can lock in some of the high demand places asap - the main one being Tokyo Disneyland Hotel which is prohibitively expensive but we think a worthy splurge for our convenience and to make our visit truly memorable for the whole family.

My only concern for this trip is the flight with C. I know E will be a dream with the ipad and few activities and books but C on the other hand is a wild one. He hates being restrained, is rarely quiet and has a very short attention span. I won't lie here, I've considered upgrading myself and leaving S up back with the two boys - but that's probably not the best way to start a family holiday. I guess the best I can do is just immerse myself in planning and hope he settles down in the next 6 months like everyone keeps promising me he will.

So, any tips or trips for packing for Tokyo Winter, flying with children, travelling with children and specifically Disney & Tokyo with children? I'll take anything.

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  1. Sounds like Tokyo would be fun.

  2. Renee
    Firstly how exciting!
    For the plane trip, I pack small toys like cars - Target have a great range of $3 specials. Wrapping them up individually adds to the surprise and I use them as 'rewards' during the flight. Have an extra plastic bag on hand for the rubbish.
    I also brought those freeze packed fruit snacks in addition to my usual lifesaver Kinder Suprises and Chupa Chups.
    Packing a small fruit knife in your luggage is handy for the hotel when you get there. Easy enough to buy fresh fruit for your room so that there's something to snack on if you can't leave the room.
    I packed vita gummies in those pill boxes you get at the chemist and was vigilant in doling these out every day while we were away. Seemed to work....
    Also emergency supply of panadol or nurofen liquid for the flight.
    Best of luck and safe travels!
    SSG xxx

  3. How fun! I've never been but my SIL is a Japanese teacher and goes often. We upgraded to J* business with the kids when we went to Hawaii in January, kids slept really well as it was a night time flight. I echo SSG's sentiments and carrying medication just in case and lots of different toys. I also banned iPad use for the week before we left so it was new again for the flight! Can't believe how good the prices you got!!


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