With just one half term left now before school really is out for Summer, our Summer holiday’s are edging ever closer. But for those of us with young children, traveling can be a real nightmare. How exactly can you keep young children occupied when traveling, whether by coach, car, train or plane? As the mother of a very active four-year-old, the idea that of spending two hours+ stuck in a seat next to a bored child is my idea of total hell, but carrying a huge bag of things to keep them busy is just not a real option. Or is it?
The Tray Kit Traveller from Collect and Calm aims to make traveling with young children just that little bit easier. The concept is quite simple, a bag that can be used as a backpack for young children to store all their special things and toys inside. However, the Tray Kit is not just a bag. Once seated on your train, in your car, plane etc, the tray opens up to form an extendable play surface for children to play on, a sort of mini table. It can be secured to train and plane tables to ensure it doesn’t keep falling to the ground, and also has a raised edge which also stops the toys rolling everywhere too. To put it quite simply, it provides something for children to play on during those boring journeys.
I was lucky enough to have been sent a Tray Kit, and last weekend I had the perfect opportunity to test it out when I made a trip from Staffordshire to Mid Wales with Joe. This entailed two train journeys so I wanted to keep luggage to a minimum, especially as I was unfamiliar with the station where we were making the change for our connection. I allowed Joe to choose some things to put into his Tray Kit. He chose a colouring book and crayons, some stickers and a sticker pad, two reading books, and some toy trains. He also packed some sweets for the trip.
Both Joe and I were seriously impressed with the Tray Kit, which fulfilled Joe’s travel needs perfectly. He could happily play with his buses and trains within the tray, which stopped the need to look for toys all over the floor, and also used the extended table on our second train, where we did not have a table seat. Joe opened his packet of pirate stickers and then stored these in the small pockets on the inside of the tray, which would also be good for storing small coins and loose change. The tray provides a hard service for drawing and colouring in – a great activity for train journeys, and the truly great thing is that everything packs away neatly when the journey (finally) comes to an end.
I would totally recommend the Collect and Calm Tray kit for anyone planning a journey this year with young children. Joe was extremely happy and proud of his, and we will definitely be using it again when we go off on our travels again, this time by plane, at the end of the month.