Going On Vacation with Your Foster Child: Traveling OK?

If you have opened up your heart and home to a foster child, you may be wondering about travel. Can you go on vacation with your foster child?

Yes, you may be able to travel and go on vacation with your foster child providing you obtain permission from the foster care agency. Having the proper documentation when traveling, especially when flying is of upmost importance. International travel may also be permitted.

For children, travel can broaden their horizons in so many ways. Depending on where they are traveling, a child can be introduced to exciting new worlds. Even instate travel offers educational opportunities while having fun at the same time. Children love museums, and museums offer a look at so much history in so many different ways.

You may also be interested in reading about the pros and cons of being a foster parent.

Whether you are heading to New York to visit the Statue of Liberty or heading to a foreign country, there is so much a child can absorb that will have a lasting impression.

You have worked hard, and you deserve some vacation time with your family. Being allowed to do so with a foster child would seem like a wonderful idea for all. You do, however, need to be upfront with your travel ideas before the plans have been made.

The last thing you should ever do is to travel out of your area with a foster child, and then hope it will be fine if the state ever finds out. Being a foster parent involves a trusting relationship between the foster parent and the foster care agency with the state in which the foster parent resides.

Chances are you will be allowed to travel with your foster child, but to truly know the answer to this question requires contacting your foster child’s case worker to find out what is required.

We cannot forget, too, that if the foster child’s parents still have legal rights to the child, then their permission may be required for vacation travel to be permitted.

Preparing to travel with your foster child

If you are in the beginning stages of hoping to plan a trip with your foster child, then you will want to contemplate the following to help you stay on track.

Reach out to your caseworker

Your first step is to contact your foster child’s case worker to share your desire to make travel plans. It is in your best interest to do this as soon as possible to ensure there will be enough time to get all of your ducks in a row without feeling rushed.

Consider your child’s schedule, not just your own

Just as you would want to consider your own schedule for planning your vacation, you will also want to consider your foster child’s schedule as well. Foster children tend to have a lot going on. Routine counseling appointments will need to be addressed, as well as any possible upcoming court appearances and/or processes.

As parents in general, we tend to allow children to miss some school for a vacation knowing they will have the opportunity to do makeup work to stay caught up. Yet something to consider may be your foster child’s experience in foster care. Many foster children get moved around, miss school, and then subsequently fall behind.

If your foster child has experienced some challenges staying caught up and on track with school, it may be worth it to consider scheduling your vacation during a time that will be less disruptive for your foster child.