Planning summer travel can be challenging when you share children with your former spouse. Good communication and careful scheduling can help ensure that you both make plenty of fun memories with your kids this summer.
Try these tips to facilitate a smooth vacation season as a co-parent.
Review your custody agreement
The custody agreement includes details of your parenting plan, including how you will divide time with your kids during holidays and school vacations. Whether this is your first year as a co-parenting family or you need a refresher on the schedule, read over the parenting plan before you make travel arrangements.
Communicate with your co-parent
Talk about your potential vacation plans sooner rather than later to lower the chance of conflict. Compromising (when necessary) is key to a successful co-parenting relationship. If your child’s other parent fails to respond to your messages about summer vacation, send him or her a certified letter.
Set clear expectations
Consider discussing a plan for how the kids will communicate with their other parent during the vacation. For some families, regularly scheduled check-ins present the most ideal option, while in other families, the children reach out to both parents as often as the children want. Regardless of the most agreeable arrangement for your family, the other parent should always have a way to reach you in case of an emergency. Parents should share their itineraries with one another when they travel with the kids.
Put the kids first
You may feel sad at the thought of your kids having a fun travel experience without you, but boost your child’s excitement about taking a trip with their other parent. Ask questions, and prepare them for a great time. Then, do something special for yourself at home.
Your divorce agreement may state that you need permission to travel out of the country or outside a certain geographic distance with your children. Make sure that you give proper notice before taking your kids out of state.