Family vacations are a highlight for every child and parent. After three years of restricted opportunities, however, you will be determined to make the most of your next adventure. With a clear and comprehensive strategy at your disposal, you can make it happen.
The great news is that you only need to make minor tweaks in order to unlock the best results for the whole family. Here’s how you can build a holiday that will deliver the magical memories that you deserve.
Choose The Right Travel Party
It is commonly stated that vacations are one of the biggest culprits for lost friendships. And it is a particularly common problem when traveling with children. Taking a vacation with another family can be a great move, especially if your child is friends with their children. However, you need to avoid traveling with people who are too needy or will not compromise on activities.
Otherwise, you will find that the vacation becomes incredibly stressful. Worse still, you will not be able to fully relax or enjoy the possibilities of the destination. On a brighter note, the right people will add an extra layer of enjoyment to your vacation Perfect.
Don’t Travel Too Far
Journeys are usually the worst part of the adventure for holidaymakers of all ages. However, spending 14 hours on a flight with children could be a very unenjoyable experience for all the family. You can’t avoid this if you’re emigrating or visiting family that have relocated. When booking a general family vacation, though, it’s probably best to avoid an unnecessarily long trip.
There are plenty of domestic locations waiting to be explored. Meanwhile, road trips are often easier on kids, especially if you have an in-car DVD player or reading worksheets to keep the kids occupied. It also gives you the chance to break up the trip.
Choose The Right Accommodation
Your home from home will naturally have a telling impact on the quality of your family vacation. Aside from providing a place to sleep and some simple comforts, it needs amenities or activities for kids. When looking at hotels, choosing one with a kids’ club can be very useful. Alternatively, a private villa with a swimming pool and ping pong table is a great option for larger parties.
Even if you want to take a family camping trip, choosing a site where there are plenty of things to see and do is vital. Because if the kids are continually bored, the vacation will be far less enjoyable.
Think About The Location & Timing
When booking your accommodation, it is equally important to consider its proximity to attractions you wish to visit. Saving $20 but spending three hours of each day on public transport to the city center, for example, is a false economy. Hiring a car may solve many of the problems faced during your time away. Still, location should be a central ingredient in the decision-making process.
On a similar note, you want to check that you are visiting at the right time. While off-peak travel may save money, it’s futile if the attractions are all shut. Knowing the situation at your time of travel is useful too.
Pack Plenty Of Snacks
Whether it’s the journey to your destination or a day excursion once you’re away, the kids will eat lots. Mealtimes at restaurants and campfire BBQs are great. But it’s equally important to have some of their favorite snacks available. Whether you pack them before departing or purchasing them once you’ve arrived is up to you. Either way, a little familiarity is very comforting when your child is away from home.
Besides, enjoying delicious foods in quantities that you wouldn’t enjoy at home is a key feature of any great vacation. Not only for children but for big kids and adults alike. Do not overlook this factor.
Find Some Educational Activities
A great family vacation should enjoy plenty of activities that are purely about fun. However, there is nothing wrong with learning a few lessons in the process. Art galleries are a particularly great way to engage the brain and help your kids learn something new. It may also inspire them in their own creative activities. Even if it doesn’t, a better understanding of other cultures is always a positive outcome.
As mentioned above, you can use some printable sheets to keep young minds engaged with academic learning. Meanwhile, simply having conversations about the places you’ve visited and landmarks you’ve seen will bring benefits.
Choose A Standout Activity
Kids will generally respond well to any fun holiday activity that you arrange. Nevertheless, finding at least one special event that will get them excited for the vacation is essential. If you are visiting the city where their favorite sports team plays, you could book a stadium tour or game tickets. Alternatively, a day at a theme park or water park is sure to deliver the desired results.
Every day of the vacation should build happy memories. However, having that one activity that your family will remember and cherish for a lifetime is essential. A vacation without one is, frankly, incomplete.
Leave Room For Some Spontaneity
Building a semi-structured schedule is advised, not least because pre-booked tickets are cheaper. However, it’s important to leave some flexibility by keeping some free time in your plans. This allows you to enjoy a day of relaxing while kids enjoy beach sports or the hotel arcade. Alternatively, it gives you the opportunity to try out a venue or activity that you may not have known about before arriving.
As a parent, ensuring that you have enough planned to keep the kids entertained is crucial. Still, spontaneous adventures and simple tasks often deliver some of the very best moments in our lives. Embrace it.
Involve Your Child In The Preparation
You aren’t going to let your child choose the destination or other key elements of your vacation planning. Still, letting them feel that they are involved in the preparation goes a long way to building the excitement. Better still, it’s a concept that works for young kids and teenagers alike. Even a simple idea, like picking out some vacation clothing is effective. A little planning of things they’d like to do works well also.
For young kids, asking them to be your helper is likely to yield the best results. Slightly older kids may respond better to feeling that they have a sense of independence. Build an appropriate strategy for their ages and you won’t go wrong.
Take A Camera
Kids love technology and gadgets. Moreover, today’s youngsters are more tech-savvy than any previous generation. Taking a camera on your vacation can give them an added source of excitement and encourage them to engage with the new surroundings. This is especially true when enjoying nature or checking out landmarks. As well as impressing your child, it helps your family take epic photos.
If a digital SLR is out of the question, fun iPhone camera accessories can have a positive impact. It’ll enhance your family vacation as well as days out back home for many years to come. The snaps can make the perfect home decoration too.
Know Your Budget
While financial matters aren’t going to play on the mind of your child, they will play on yours. You can start the process of building a great vacation that won’t break the bank before you leave. Learning to get cheap flights or hotels can save you hundreds. Group attraction tickets or deals that include multiple activities may be a very useful addition to the planning process.
In some cases, opting for all-inclusive deals can be useful as it allows you to control the budget. Ultimately, even the best vacation isn’t worth causing long-term financial struggles. Staying calculated is crucial.
Do A Little Online Research
You will naturally conduct the necessary research to find a family-friendly destination. However, it is equally beneficial to familiarize yourself with the place ahead of the trip. Especially if you ever experience anxiety. Reading testimonials on the best places to visit is a good starting point. For the best results, though, you should consider using Google Maps to ‘walk’ some of the popular streets. It removes the sense of unknowing.
It may also be worth storing valuable numbers in your smartphone before you leave. Taxi firms, the hotel, and (if overseas) the Embassy are just some of the most valuable contact details to register.
Remove The Stress
Vacations are supposed to be enjoyable. Sadly, it will be impossible to experience this if you allow your stress levels to soar. Giving yourself plenty of time to get your packing done and documents organized will be crucial. Putting health insurance in place will also lift a weight of stress from your shoulders. If you plan to travel by car, roadside assistance and a first aid response kit will be vital additions.
Finally, you must remember that plans can change. If your child is tired or ill, for example, you may have to alter your schedule or find new activities. That’s absolutely fine. As long as your time is enjoyed, nothing else matters.