Taking the little ones on a family holiday is exciting for the kids, but can be a bag full of problems for the parents. Here’s a quick guide to help with all the niggly bits that might help prevent a big of strife during the vacation.
No matter where you’re travelling, preparation is the key. Packing takes time, especially when packing for the whole family. Discuss and arrange an itinerary, organise transport well before the leaving date, and write a list of all the things you need to pack before you start throwing every other bit of clothing into a bag. Sit down with the kids and go through what they need to take, what they might want to take, and what’s being too excessive. Take into consideration how long it will take to pack and re-pack, get the kids dressed, and the infinite distractions and obstacles that no amount of preparation can prevent. Be flexible with trip plans in order to accommodate the little things.
Research the destination – find hotels or apartments that are family-friendly and not too far from any attractions or places you might want to visit. Keep in mind that while you and your partner might want to spend hours strolling through fine art museums, the kids probably won’t appreciate it. Try to achieve and balance, and allow for hands on activities and kid-friendly attractions as well as finding time for what you really want to see as well.
Money is definitely a key issue on family holidays and costs including transport, accommodation, daily meals, extra activities and souvenirs all add up. Proper budgeting needs to take place beforehand, with a bit of flexibility in case of emergencies. Travel insurance is a must when travelling with the family, as anything could go wrong.
Keep an open mind
Travelling the world is hands down the best way to open up your mind to other cultures, food, people and ideas. While your kids might not take everything in, they will definitely be better off for having seen somewhere other than home. Of course, not all travel has to lead back home. Sometimes families stumble upon a particular city or town and fall head over heels with where they’ve landed. Places like Vale, in Western Australia’s Swan Valley, is a great example of a well-established community with beautiful surroundings with affordable property that could be snatched up by any family stumbling upon the town. Keep an open mind, and you never know, perhaps the next trip will lead to a life-changing move.
Sarah Paige is passionate about travelling and blogs about handy travel tips. She has explored an array of beautiful towns, including Western Australia’s Vale.