Make sure that your family holiday is stress-free with these tips on How to Plan a Multi-Generational Family Vacation.
Granny and Grandad love the cruise liners, Aunty Sue will only stay in a five-star hotel with an infinity pool and your kids just want to be able to swim in the sea. So, how do you deal with all of that? Well, it’s actually more common than you think. About 25 percent of all leisure travelers are grandparents and 37 percent of them have traveled with their grandchildren.
Still, as tight-knit as your family may be it is hard to make everyone happy. It is easier than you think, however, to plan a multi-generational family vacation that is relaxing, memorable and enjoyable for everyone involved. Here are our top tips on how to plan a multi-generational family vacation:
Get Ahead of the Game. Planning is the key to success in a multi-generational family vacation.
When traveling as a couple or even just with your own kids, you can stray away from the plan as freely as you like, the more people who are involved means the more planning is needed. That’s not to say you need to adopt military precision and organization when planning. It’s far from that.
Planning can actually be super fun and stress-free, and the collaborative aspect of it adds to the excitement.
Planning ahead of time not only gives you a bigger margin of error, but it also means that booking flights and accommodations is cheaper. The toughest part of planning is setting dates. Some people have pre-school kids, others have big kids at uni, and someone always has an employer who is notoriously hard to talk round about annual leave. You have to figure out this all out, but if you start early, it’s more likely you’ll be successful.
A Google Calendar that everyone joins is a good way to see everyone’s availability all in one go.
Take time to listen to what everyone wants to do and work to strike a balance between everyone. While some members of the family might want to get out and about, see, do and experience everything, others may want total relaxation. Some may want to pick and choose what they are involved in.
Double check with the whole group about those big group activities before you book in advance and outline some other ‘optional’ activities. These activities should not require prior booking and final numbers can be decided moments before get on your way.
Make sure you set aside time for family time where everyone hangs out together, be this a big family meal, a beach party, a boat cruise or day hike. You need some selling points like these to get everyone excited about the trip.
Consider All-Inclusive. Deep down, we all like the idea of a big family cooking session—the little ones helping to chop the veggies, Uncle Simon spending hours on his secret marinade and the cousins setting the table. But if this is not what your family usually does, don’t try and rock the boat now.
Particularly for a first time multi-generational family vacation take the unnecessary stress out of the equation and book an all-inclusive resort. This gives all the family food and drink until their heart’s content, plus there is no squabbling over meal times or food preferences.
What’s more, everyone gets their own suite room so there will be no queues for the bathroom in the morning. If the trip includes kids, just be sure to make sure you book at a family all-inclusive, not an adults-only resort. It should be pretty obvious which is which, but that mistake has been made many times before.
Get Some Help. It may seem overwhelming to try and organize every last aspect of this trip on your own. With your own family to look after, it may start to feel like a part-time job getting everything sorted.
Why not ask a travel agent for help? After all, that is what they are there for.
Let your travel agent iron out all the details and spend the time searching for the best deal for you. When it comes to payment this too can be a really easy process, everyone just pays the travel agent their share and you eliminate the risk of being left out of pocket.
Family feuds over money on holiday are precisely not what you want.
Stress-Free and Your Style. Make sure that your multi-generational family holiday is stress-free by planning ahead and seeking the help of a travel professional.
Get everyone on board and involved by utilizing scheduling tools like Google Calendar so everything is organized in one place. Talk to your whole family, and do it your way. Every family has a different style, so just do what works for you.
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