Practical Travel Tips

How to Inform Santa that Your Child Won’t Be Home for Christmas! (Free Printable)

Put your child’s mind at ease and add a little Christmas magic with this easy to customize letter to Santa.

You’re worried about packing, flights, and holiday shopping. It all seems so stressful.

But your kids have a much bigger concern:

If they’re not home for Christmas, how will Santa find them?

Sure, some kids will feel reassured by the promise that Santa knows all and will find them wherever they are in the world–whether it’s at Grandma’s in the next county over or at Walt Disney World or on a family getaway to Germany.

But other kids need more, something tangible to inform Santa that they won’t be at their regular home address for the holidays.

A letter, one specific to your family’s plans, and a key, a magical key of course, can provide that reassurance that Santa will track them down.

I came up with this idea a month or so ago because this is the first year Little A is really aware of Christmas. She’s learned all of the words to “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” (well, sorta) and has even met Santa without freaking out. She’s also a perceptive little person and has lots of questions. (So. Many. Questions). Since we’ll be waking up at my parents’ house on Christmas morning, I knew I’d need a plan to answer Little A’s inevitable question:

How will Santa know where I am?

My answer: although Santa sees all and knows all, it’s helpful to leave him a reminder. That reminder is a letter and, if you want to crank up the magic, a special key.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something that I have recommended. While clicking these links won’t cost you any extra money, they will help me keep this site up and running.

Here’s what you need:

  • Santa letter questionnaire (free printable!)
  • Printer and paper (holiday paper is nice, but regular old white paper works too)
  • A skeleton key (optional; available at hardware stores, DIY stores, and Amazon of course!)
  • Crayons and Christmas stickers (optional)

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Print the questionnaire and use it to interview your child.
  2. Write a letter to Santa based on your child’s answers. (If you’re stuck, I’ve provided the letter Little A and I put together. You can tailor it to your needs.)
  3. Have your child decorate the letter with stickers and drawings.
  4. Tape the skeleton key to the letter.
  5. Place letter under your tree or on your hearth or wherever your child thinks it needs to go.

For your letter to “work,” you need to address your child’s concerns. Ask your little elf what Santa needs to know. Does Santa need your full itinerary or just your location on Christmas Eve and Morning? Does Santa need to know about Grandma’s third-floor apartment or Grandpa’s overly friendly Chihuahua? The questionnaire I’ve put together provides not only reassurance for your child but also a fun holiday activity.

According to Little A, Santa needs to know where she’ll be on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. I added the special key to up the magical ante.

Here’s our letter:

December 24, 2017

Dear Santa, 

Hi. This is Little A’s mom. I’m writing to remind you that Little A won’t be home on Christmas Eve or most of Christmas Day. 

We’re spending Christmas Eve and Morning at JoJo and PaPa’s. Later we’ll go to Grandma and Grandpa’s for lunch. Afterward, we’ll come home to take care of Kate the Cat. (Her stocking is under the tree!)

I’ve taped the magical Christmas key you sent me when Little A was born to this letter. I’m not sure how it works, but you said we should leave it out if we’re ever going to be away at Christmas. 

Thank you and merry Christmas!

Little A’s Mom

As you can see, I’ve tried to keep this letter simple. As with all effective lies magic, simpler is better. You don’t want to throw in too many details. You’ll only generate questions. Lots and lots of questions.

Have your kids ever worried about whether Santa would be able to find them? What did you do to reassure your kids?

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