For most of us, there’s not a lot to love about taking kids through an airport at this time of year.
The vast spaces are noisy and busy, full of snaking queues of people tripping you up on their cumbersome baggage. Once you go through security, you’re sucked into a mass of hurrying people who seem to be going nowhere, before being ejected into a busy shopping mall at the other end.
It’s not pleasant for anyone, but with the promise of a beach at the other end, most children get swept along in the excitement and cope.
For my son Sam, who has autism, it’s a different story.
For him and thousands of other children and adults with the condition, noisy airports with their flashing lights, moving walkways and puzzling signage, can be confusing and overwhelming. For many, it’s just too much, making air travel impossible.
For Sam, it is an experience that needs managing, which explains why this summer, as the sole adult flying to the south of France with my two children, I need to plan better, travel smarter, and take up all the help I can get.