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How To Keep Kids From Getting Lost

A blue plastic teddy bear child locator, attached to the white shoes of a toddler in jeans who is outside on grass.

Have you ever been out and turned around to find your child has vanished?

It’s a moment of pure terror. And while most kids are found within minutes, it can feel like a lifetime. But life is supposed to be filled with fun outings and adventures. So how do you keep kids from getting lost? And what do you do if they do?

First, Set Your Safety Rules

Dress for Success

When you’re headed to a crowded place, dress your child in bright colors, so he’ll be easier to spot. Consider wearing the same colors yourself. That way, should you get separated, it’s easy to remember what the other is wearing: just look down!

Say Cheese: Snap a Photo

Take a photo of your child just before your adventure, and should your child get lost, you’ll be able to share an up-to-the-minute pic. (Remember, more than one freaked-out parent has drawn a blank when describing their lost child.)

Make Staying Close a Safety Rule

From the beginning, teach your child to stay close to you. Establish a safety zone. Many family issues are negotiable, but safety isn’t one of them.

Always Identify Who’s on Duty

If more than one adult is on an outing, define who’s on kid patrol at any given time. Avoid “but I thought you were watching him!” situations.

Find Kids Products for Serial Explorers

If you have a serious wanderer or you’re a serious worrier, rules may not be enough. The good news is, there are many solutions that can help you keep your child close…and we’ve got ‘em!

The Ties that Bind: Child Harnesses

If you have an adventurous toddler, consider a child harness. Don’t like the visual of a traditional “child leash?” Try a cute backpack harness. Kids like them, and they’re discreet.

I Want to Hold Your…Wristband

If your child feels “too big” to hold your hand, try parent child safety wristbands like our Kinderkord. The wristbands are connected by a three foot tether, which gives kids a little more freedom.

Child Locators Put Technology to Work

Innovative child locators use technology to alert you when kids leave your pre-set safety zone. They also help you find them. Our Mommy I’m Here child locator includes a key-ring sized transmitter and kid-friendly receiver that clips to your child’s shoe. And the Buddy Tag wristband, which looks like a cool bracelet, holds a tiny child tracking device that links to an app on your smartphone.

Create a “What If…” Action Plan

Experts recommend giving your child an action plan for if you’re separated. Action plans can include:

  • Coaching your child to stop, look around, and call out for you.
  • Teaching a younger child to stay put
  • Setting a meeting place with an older child
  • Directing your child to seek out the nearest employee or mommy for help.

In short, an action plan can help your child stay calm and help you get reunited quicker. But the best course of action is to avoid getting lost in the first place!

 Related Article(s):

Amusement & Water Park Safety Tips

Life Skills 101: Teaching Kids Responsibility

Top 10 Travel Safety Tips for Parents 

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Published on Feb 12 2016

Last Updated on Sep 16 2021

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