Family on Bikes

A Family Cycles from the Arctic to Patagonia


Boise, Idaho, USA
August 31
Our family of four (with 13-year-old twin boys) dreamed the impossible dream and reached the unreachable star! On March 21, 2011 we pedaled the final mile to arrive at the end of the world in USHUAIA, Argentina! We spent three years cycling 17,300 miles through 15 countries starting in Alaska to get there.


Familyonbikes's Links
FEBRUARY 15, 2012 9:00AM

French fries and chicken nuggets are travel essentials: The world’s worst family travel advice ever

Rate: 0 Flag

Do not attempt to travel to a place where there isn’t kid-friendly food. This seemingly small detail is essential for a successful holiday with young children. French fries, nuggets, pizza and the like will save your holiday.

Eating international food

Children learn to appreciate foreign foods by eating them

If you’re like me, your jaw is hanging down around the floor right about now. Surely, this outrageously bad family travel advice isn’t for real. I mean – nobody would seriously suggest that Micky D’s is an essential detail for successful travel for kids. Right?


Not only did somebody suggest it, but CNN did. I’m typical fairly impressed with CNN’s travel advice, but they blew it big time here.

I’m not even sure how to respond to this absurdity. To suggest that kids aren’t capable of finding food in all parts of the world is sheer craziness. I mean – there are kids living wherever you’ll travel to, right? What will those kids eat? Surely your children won’t starve to death because there is no McDonald’s around.

I would even go so far as to suggest you should travel to a place specifically because there is no McDonald’s.

Kids learn to love what they grow up with

Kids learn to love what they grow up with

Don’t get me wrong. I have no problem with McDonald’s. I’m not one of those people who feel American fast food needs to stay in America. If I enjoy Mexican and Japanese fast food in America, I see no reason why Mexicans and Japanese can’t enjoy American fast food in their own countries.

But to suggest that my child will be miserable unless he can eat French fries and chicken McNuggets is ludicrous.

According to the article, “Unless your kid has an abnormally educated palate, [you should] hold off on that culinary tour of India.”

Wrong. Plain ol’ flat out wrong.

Take your child on that culinary tour in order to develop an abnormally educated palate. How else will he cultivate it?

As I see it, the last thing I want is a child who will only eat “some fried, fast food or at the very least, a bowl of mac and cheese.”

Please chime in with your thoughts in the comments. Feel free to respond to the entire article; don’t confine yourself to just the food issue as I did. I am seriously blown away by this ghastly advice.

I’m not the only family travel blogger who was appalled by this bad advice. In fact, a whole bunch of us decided to write about our concerns. Here are their posts:

A King’s Life: The Surprisingly Easy Truth of Traveling with Kids by Sabina from A King’s Life

The “Secret” to Traveling with Children by Susan W from Family Travel Bucket List

Worst Family Travel Advice I’ve Ever Read  by Gabi Klaf from The Nomadic Family

Debunking CNN’s rules for traveling with kids by Mary from Bohemian Travelers

How Do you Travel with Chilldren? by Alisa from Living Outside of the Box

5 Rules of Travel With Kids: A Traveling Child Responds by Jennifer Miller from Edventure Project

CNN’s Ridiculous Rules About Travel With Kids by Corinne from Have Baby Will Travel

Shocking Tips on Traveling with Kids That Went Unnoticed…It is Time to Demystify The Five Rules of Traveling with Kids by Claudia Looi from Travel Writing Pro

5 Amazing Reasons To Travel With Your Kids! by Marina Villatorio from Expat Mom

More Than French Fries by Lisa Shusterman from Around the World in Easy Ways

Rules are What You Make Them: Paving Your Own Way Through Family Travel by Jessica from Suitcases and Sippy Cups

Why “Easy” Travel Options Aren’t Always the Best for Kids- a Rebuttal to CNNGo “5 Rules of Traveling With Kids” by Jody Halsted from Family Rambling

CNNGo Five Rules of Travelling With Kids Are You For Real by Lisa Wood from New Life on the Road

Myths, NOT rules, of traveling with kids by Kate Rehkopf from Experiential Family

My Reality (Not Rules) When Traveling with Kids by Keryn Means from Walkingon Travels

Yes ! It is possible to travel with children of all ages by Susan from Grow in Grace Life

Forget the Rules of Travel – Try Backpacking with Kids in Yellowstone National Park by Sandra Foyt from Albany Kid

Enjoy this Post? Join 30,000+ Monthly Readers
Don't miss the inspiration!

Subscribe to our
RSS feed
Like us on
Follow us on

French fries and chicken nuggets are travel essentials: The world’s worst family travel advice ever is a post from: Family on Bikes. Sign up for our monthly newsletter to receive your free e-book: Bicycle Touring with Children; A Guide to Getting Started.

Your tags:


Enter the amount, and click "Tip" to submit!
Recipient's email address:
Personal message (optional):

Your email address:


Type your comment below:
Excellent advice, Nancy. Yes, this is hooey, and I have children who love sushi to prove it.