As the third in our series of holiday gift guides, today we are highlighting our favorite travel gifts for kids with autism, ADHD, anxiety, SPD, and all related disabilities.
We’ve been traveling as a family for the entire 10 years that Aidan has been alive, so we’ve become serious professionals in testing out and using travel toys and tools to keep Aidan regulated, comfortable, and happy. The key to traveling with kids is to plan in advance and be prepared for every need they may have, even if it is an unexpected situation. When your child has extraordinary needs, this need to plan and prepare is even more important.
Since he was a tiny baby in an incubator on a jumbo jet, Aidan has been having adventures and travelling worldwide. It hasn’t always been easy, especially when Aidan started struggling with sensory issues, impulsivity, and anxiety related to his autism and ADHD. It has meant that in order to take even the simplest of trips, we need to stock up on every possible gadget and gizmo we can find to help him process the experience.
This holiday season, many of our favorite stores are having great sales on some of our favorite gifts for traveling families. So here without further ado is our list of top gifts for kids with autism and other different abilities who love to travel!
On the Go Calming Tote Kit
This kit has a variety of items that are both toys and calming aids, and I love it because it comes in its very own tote so that you can grab it and go. This is great gift for kids with autism, ADHD, or sensory integration disorder or any child who can benefit from having something to focus on when their environment becomes too chaotic.
On the Go Calming Tote Kit – $79.99
from: Fun and Function
Soft Plush Weighted Blanket
If you have not used a weighted blanket yet, we recommend this plush version from Fun and Function. Weighted blankets are great at reducing anxiety and helping kids sleep. Bring this plush blanket on road trips for the car, sleeping in strange beds in hotel rooms, or when visiting friends or family. Many adults find them soothing as well, so you might just want to snatch up one for yourself.
Soft Plush Weighted Blanket – $99.99
from: Fun and Function
In a Pickle Card Game
In a Pickle is a card game developed by therapists that challenges kids to perform an action on a card. This is a great game to stash in your carry-on for long hours waiting in airports or to do something fun on road-trip rest breaks. The cards include challenges that deal with alertness, balance, being calm, and improving motor skills, so they are perfect for wiggly impulsive kids, especially ones with autism, ADHD, or developmental disabilities.
In A Pickle – $35.99
from: Fun and Function
This adorable plush dog is so much more than a cute stuffed animal. The attached fidget toys are designed to relieve anxiety when kids become overwhelmed, provide an engaging activity for their brain. The pup also acts as a cozy source of comfort throughout the day, whether traveling or at home.
Twiddle Pup Sensory Toy – $50.00
Travel Dry-Erase Board
Aidan has a challenge with schedules. He is very rigid and so when we are on a trip and the schedule changes, he can often get upset. To combat this, we got Crayola’s Travel Dry-Erase Board. Every morning, we write the schedule on one side so he can always look at it. If a change needs to be made, we can easily erase and change it! He likes knowing that we are prepared for these unexpected changes.
Crayola Washable Dry-Erase Travel Pack – $12.99
Portable DVD Player
Last but not least, our all-time favorite travel tool is a portable DVD player! On every car trip, we’ve taken our trusty player and a handful of Aidan’s favorite movies. It keeps him entertained and calm, and since Aidan loves Broadway musicals, it keeps our car full of song. This player from Amazon has a High-Definition screen, multiple types of input, and a headset car rest for car rides.
12.5″ Portable DVD Player – $69.99
For more gift ideas, check out our gift guides for men who love to travel and adventurous women.
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