When you plan a vacation, there are many factors that go into preparation and execution… Especially when you have to consider all the sensory experiences, transitions, and thousands of other vacationers around you. It seems daunting, but you are not alone. Below are links to personal accounts from parents, caregivers, and even first-hand accounts of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who love to travel.
Parents and Caregivers
Tribe on a Quest is a blog about a family who travels around the world, writing about each destination to help others prepare and understand the possibilities that are out there for your children with ASD. From Disney, to the Nickelodeon Universe, to Australia, Marquita offers well-written accounts of their experiences in each location.
Lisa Lightner is a mother and advocate for children with special needs, specifically on the autism spectrum. In A Day in Our Shoes, Lisa shares about a range of topics, including traveling for children with sensory challenges and disabilities. She includes sensory information, dietary choices, how to save money, best times, and important details about each destination.
Margalit Sturm Francus is a mother of two, including one son with ASD. Having lived in five different countries across three continents, The Traveling Mom built a place to advocate, inspire, and advise families of children with ASD, called Autistic Globetrotting. She also includes her thoughts on different aspects of travel, including destinations, hotels, and airlines.
Pilar Clark is a mother of two, including one son with high-functioning ASD and sensory processing disorder. From Illinois to Puerto Rico, Pilar writes about her family vacations and recommendations as The Offbeat Travel Mama.
Also known as The Autism Dad, Rob Gorski is a single father who raises his three sons, all of whom are on the autism spectrum. Rob’s blog contains more than 12,000 posts detailing a variety of topics, including recent travels, daily victories, and serious issues for parents of children with ASD.
Sara Stythe is a mother of three incredible daughters, one of whom has ASD, epilepsy and developmental delays. Simply Isla is a personal blog based out of New Zealand in which Sara shares general facts about ASD, education, service, dogs, and of course, experiences with traveling.
Just over a decade ago, this mother started her blog, Autism with a Side of Fries. She created it as a place for sharing laughter and support for those in the autism community, including sharing her own accounts of taking vacations with a child with ASD.
Autism Journey writers Stephanie and Jackie are both mothers to children with ASD. In nearly 50 blog posts, Stephanie writes to raise awareness and support for the autism community. In this blog post, she emphasizes why it is important for families to take some R&R and the reality of what it was like to take an 11-hour flight. Jackie writes about why cruises are ideal for families of children with autism and the benefits of such a vacation. Not only is Jackie a mother of two children on the spectrum, but she also shares her knowledge of autism based on her own experiences.
Lisa Quinones is a mother of a son with ASD who writes about what it’s like to live in New York. In her blog, titled Atypical Familia, she also writes about her vacations, such as Universal Studios and Disney cruises.
Katie is a woman with autism who has traveled to 18 countries and all 7 continents. Through her blog, she hopes to show others that it is absolutely possible and beneficial to travel the world. As the Autistic Travel Coach, she writes about how travel has changed her life and taught her valuable lessons and even offers free consultations to literally coach others through traveling.
Michael John Carley is the founder and executive director of GRASP, which is the largest organization for adults on the autism spectrum. He is also a consultant and author. It wasn’t until he was a parent that he and his son were both diagnosed with ASD within one week of each other. Here, Michael emphasizes how crucial travel is to his life and why families with children with ASD should try it out. He also writes Autism without Fear, where he talks about his experiences, including autism surfing organizations.
From reading any of those blogs, I am sure you have learned that traveling is not just a walk in the park. However, that does not mean that you should avoid vacation time. As you read, you will see many stories about the incredible, life-changing experiences of families of children with ASD. With their tips and personal stories, you know that you are not alone! Your family’s next vacation could be right around the corner.
Want to learn more?
Contact Chicago Occupational Therapy or call (773) 980-0300 to learn more about our services and how we can help your child prepare for a smooth travel experience.