If you’re going for a trip to a big city, eating out with kids can be hard, as there aren’t always child-friendly options.
Kids vary in their ability to sit through dinner at a restaurant.
Some will sit patiently and enjoy chatting with adults and trying new foods…
But let’s face it, even the most well-behaved child can get bored if they are forced to sit through a long meal.
So here are some tips for surviving dining out in London with younger ones.
1. Check The Website And Read The Menus Before Eating Out With Kids
Even if a place is advertised as kid-friendly, there’s no guarantee that when you show up there will be something they want to eat.
Even kids’ menus can miss the mark sometimes, meaning you have to drag hungry children home because they won’t eat anything.
Check restaurant menus online before you go, so that you can check there’s at least one dish they like.
2. Visit Nice Places For Lunch, Not Dinner
If there’s a restaurant you’re dying to visit, consider visiting during lunchtime rather than dinner.
Your kids won’t be overtired, service will be more relaxed, and there are often set meals, so it’s less expensive.
There’s also less chance of annoying fellow diners, as they won’t be out for romantic child-free meals.
3. Find Interesting Restaurants To Visit
Find restaurants that your kids will be interested in, and they are less likely to misbehave.
For example, visit 100hoxton.com and you’ll see that they offer the unique dining experience of boodle fight.
This is eaten without plates or cutlery and is a lot of fun for all ages.
When things are served in this unique way, kids are more likely to try exotic foods.
4. Look For Signs That A Restaurant Is Kid-Friendly
There are a number of ways you can tell whether a restaurant is truly kid-friendly:
- They offer a kids’ menu or half portions of adult meals
- They have highchairs or booster seats
- Reviews from families on sites like TripAdvisor are positive
- When you make a booking, they are friendly and happy for you to bring children
It might be best not to bring children to a restaurant if it has an adult environment, at least until they’re a little older.
5. Bring Some Entertainment
Younger kids will need some sort of entertainment between courses, especially if service is slow.
An iPad or phone is the common choice, with headphones of course, but there are lots of ways to entertain kids in a restaurant that don’t involve a screen.
Try to get them to sit through as much of dinner as possible without bringing out the toys and activities, and see if they can go for longer and longer periods without entertainment, as this will help socialise them and get them used to eating out for dinner.
Ready To Try Eating Out With Kids?
We’ve learnt that picking your times, opting for a child-friendly atmosphere, whilst sourcing entertaining venues and menus, will mean you’ve got eating out with kids in London sussed.