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The Better Behavior Show with Dr. Nicole Beurkens

May 18, 2022

My guest this week is travel expert, Dawn Barclay.

In this episode, Dawn and I discuss traveling with kids and especially families with special needs. 

Vacations should be relaxing and rejuvenating, but often, it’s not actually what happens when we take our kids places. Traveling with kids can be tough to navigate, and even more so when you have kids with challenges. Dawn is a travel expert who wrote the book on how to make travel easier when you have a child who is anxious, on the spectrum, or with any other type of special needs considerations.  She shares so many practical tips and tools to make vacation more enjoyable for the entire family.


Dawn Barclay is an award-winning author who has spent a career working in different aspects of the travel industry. She started in sales, marketing and management positions with her family's firms, Barclay Travel and Barclay International Group Short Term Apartment Rentals, and then branched out into the travel trade, reporting with senior or contributing editor positions at Travel Agent magazine, Travel Life, Travel Insider Report, lots of others. She is a mom of two and resides in New York Scenic Hudson Valley. She also writes fiction and has leadership roles in several organizations.


Connect with Dawn Barclay:

  • Website:
  • Twitter: @travelingdiff
  • Facebook
  • Instagram: @travelingdiff


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Episode Timeline:


Introduction to Dawn Barclay & Travel Background … 00:01:40

Industries Accommodating for Special Needs & Neurodivergent Kids … 00:06:10 

Travel Planning Mis-steps for Special Needs Families … 00:09:48

Planning a Child-Centric Holiday … 00:14:50

Scheduling in Parent Enjoyment … 00:17:30

Realistic Expectations for Traveling with Children … 00:19:15

Surprising Tips for Preparing for Traveling with Special Needs Children … 00:27:00

Always Have a Backup Plan … 00:31:32

Traveling Different Book & Resources … 00:32:56

Episode Wrap Up … 00:35:22