The summer can be a difficult time for parents who are divorced or are in the midst of a divorce. When kids are out of school, parents need to plan far in advance to make visitation during this time as easy as possible. Between daycare arrangements, negotiating extended summer vacations, and rearranging custody, summer can be challenging for co-parenting families.
We’ve put a few helpful tips together for navigating summer vacation for divorced parents:
In order to avoid last-minute disagreements, both parents should discuss and put into place summer vacation schedules. Often times, time-sharing agreements or Court Orders will outline who has the children and when, as well as how many vacation days each parent receives. The further in advance you plan, the less likely there is to be conflict.
It’s important that you provide the other parent with details about your summer vacation plans or trip. Be sure to inform them if you’re planning on going out of the state, how long you’ll be gone, where you’ll be staying, your flight itinerary, etc. The more information you share, the better off you will be.
Cover Your Bases
In most cases, if you plan to travel out of the country, both parents will need to provide written notarized permission for the children to leave. Make sure you have everything you need before planning your trip.
Make a Checklist
The traveling parents need to ensure they have copies of their children’s health insurance and immunization documentation, especially if traveling abroad. Don’t forget to pack an adequate supply of any special medications that the children need.
When deciding on vacation plans, do not let it manifest into a competition with the other parent. Your children will value quality time with you and won’t care about who takes them where. They just want to be happy and have fun while enjoying time away from school.
Prepare the Children
Once vacation plans are decided upon, parents should jointly communicate them with the children. It is important for the children to understand that the vacation schedule is something that both parents decided together. Remind the children that even though they won’t see you for a few days, they will still have fun with their other parent.
Keeping your children’s best interests in mind and working together cooperatively with the other parent will go a long way in helping you provide your children with a fun, safe, and organized summer vacation.