For many of us, a holiday is an opportunity to spend time with those we love. It’s a chance to take a break from work, escape the stresses of everyday life, and just relax for a little while. With summer fast approaching, families everywhere have begun preparing for their annual getaways. The trouble is, while a trip together is definitely rewarding, travelling with your kids can be quite daunting too. Almost every parent has some sort of travel horror story to tell, after all. With that in mind, here are ten things that you can do to ensure that your family holiday remains stress-free.
1) Plan The Trip Together
No matter how old they may be, kids hate being told what to do. They tend to resist anything you ask of them, even if what you’re asking is for them to have fun. Because of this, it helps to plan your trip together. There are many ways that you could get your little ones involved, including having them suggest destinations, accommodation, things to do, places to eat, and more. If your kids feel like they have some control over the trip, they’ll have fewer reasons to complain about it.
2) Begin With Baby Steps
If you’ve never travelled with your kids before, booking a long-haul flight probably isn’t the best idea. You don’t know how your kids are going to react on the plane, after all. Instead, you could arrange a shorter trip, like a long weekend away somewhere domestic. A quick trip on a plane will get your little one used to flying and let you know if they have any issues with it. This means that, when you next go on holiday, you’ll have a better idea of how to keep them calm and happy.
3) Start To Save Early
Family holidays are far from cheap. Because of this, you will have to raise a significant sum of money before you can even think about going away. Although there are borrowing options available, including bad credit loan solutions, saving up the money yourself is always the best idea. By doing so, you cut the cost of your trip, as you won’t have to pay back interest. Raising enough money can take some time, so you should begin to save up as soon as you can.
4) Book The Right Accommodation
Most people automatically decide to stay at a hotel when they go away. However, there are many more accommodation options out there, most of which are much more suitable for a family. Holiday homes and apartments, for example, offer plenty of room for you and your little ones to spread out. You can also cook your own meals in this accommodation, which is a great way to save money. Some of these properties are serviced too, so the cleaning will be done for you.
5) Establish Some Holiday Rules
Although some people would argue otherwise, going on holiday doesn’t mean that all rules from back home should fly out the window. After all, you don’t set rules for no reason. To make sure that your kids know what you expect of them, you should establish a few new rules for when you head off. These will help your kids to stay safe, as well as keep them well behaved. Make sure that you tell your kids these rules before you go away and remind them of them when necessary.
6) Pack The Bags Yourself
With so much to do and so little time to get it all done, delegating a few holiday tasks to others might seem a good idea. However, there are a few that you should always do yourself. Although your kids will likely want to help you, never allow them to pack their own bags before you go away. What you view as holiday essentials and what they do will likely differ, so it’s best that you pack yourself. Just remember to ask them if there is anything else they want to bring along.
7) Invest In Travel Insurance
When holiday costs begin piling high, some people will do anything they can to save a little money. While there are many expenses that you can leave out of your holiday budget, one that you shouldn’t is travel insurance. Although this may seem an unnecessary cost, you’ll be glad that you bought it if anything went wrong. As well as covering medical expenses, most travel insurance policies also protect against cancellations, damages, and losses.
8) Take Lots Of Entertainment
Little ones get cranky incredibly quickly, especially when they’re bored and tired. Because of this, it’s vital that you pack plenty of entertainment. There are many things that you could bring with you on holiday, including small toys, books, and portable games consoles. You might also want to pack a laptop or tablet so that your kids can watch a film or TV show. If you’re travelling long-haul, try booking an overnight flight so that your little one sleeps most of the way.
9) Keep A Flexible Schedule
A holiday can only last for so long. This is why many families try to cram as much as they can into the time that they’re away. The problem with this is that it can be incredibly exhausting, both for you and your children. You’ll begin to feel travel burnout early on in the trip, and this will affect the rest of your time away. Although it helps to plan certain activities in advance, you shouldn’t schedule every minute of the day. Instead, give yourself some time to relax and go with the flow.
10) Give Yourself Extra Days
Whenever possible, you should allow yourself an extra free day both before and after your trip. Packing and preparing to go away often takes a lot longer than expected, so you don’t want to be doing it the morning before your flight. You’re a lot more likely to forget something you need by doing so. A free day after your trip means that you can readjust to being at home and get back to reality before you head into work.
Family holidays can be stressful at times, but, with the advice above, yours should be a much more enjoyable experience.