Planning a Family Vacation

March 26, 2019
Going on a family vacation is a memorable experience most families try to undertake if the budget allows. Adults get to relax away from work while children and teenagers get the opportunity to travel and explore new places. Planning a family vacation can be difficult, however. First, an appropriate destination must be agreed upon. A delicate balance may have to be struck here, weighing in the needs and wants of every family member. Children may become bored and disinterested without stimulating activities or an active environment, while adults and even teenagers may experience the same if planned activities cater only to children. After choosing a travel destination, one must then plan these activities and further places to check out and explore in the destination’s vicinity. The bottom line, it’s a lot of work, and for those planning a family vacation for the first time, it can be daunting, especially when traveling with young children. Read on and we’ll go over three quick guidelines which should get you on the right track with planning your dream vacation.


If you already have some destinations in mind, research online and find out everything you can. This means researching travel times, plane ticket prices (or estimated gas expenditure and price if traveling by car), weather check-ups, things to do and see in your destination’s city, hotel or resort fees, and finding the best place in the year to go, as well as many, many more factors. Don’t forget to consider disability accommodations if that’s relevant to your trip, too. It may sound difficult, but there are some ways to streamline the process. First, think about two factors: the type of climate that works for your family and which activities can be fun or entertaining to try for everyone. After narrowing it down with those parameters, research which locations bode well for your budget. If you don’t have the luxury of vacationing often, don’t be afraid to stretch your budget a little. Can’t find a destination quite tailored to your needs? Consider classic, foolproof family vacation destinations like sunny California, tropical Florida, and of course, Disneyland and Disney World (which are located in California, and Florida, respectively) if you love theme parks. Chances are, your kids will love Disneyland and Disney World too!


Simply relaxing and taking it easy with some local exploration and sightseeing with the occasional local restaurant is one way to enjoy a vacation. However, there is still much to do and see when you have time on vacation. If you’re looking for a little more activity and adventure, research the destination and its available activities. If you’re staying by the ocean, look into snorkeling, paddle boarding, or glass-bottom boat tours to keep the family occupied. Staying by a national park or in the outdoors? You can camp, hike, and explore, then wind down with a trip to your local town (or city) for lunch or dinner. Your kids will stay occupied and appreciate the fun too. By the way, use Google Maps for Android and iOS as a navigation aid when traveling from destination to destination. If you’re more of the spontaneous type, all power to you and plan your vacation as each day comes. But if you’re looking to plan your days, make sure there’s enough time to eat and relax at the end of the day at your leisure. Having a bit of flexibility in your schedule is great too, as the weather can be unpredictable and throw off planned activity times. Consider having contingency or backup plans in case of adverse weather or other interruptions. Also, if you’re looking to prepare your own meals, don’t forget to find time to go grocery shopping. It won’t be the most entertaining part of the trip for your kids, but it’ll be necessary if you want to do some cooking.


Taking children on vacation can sometimes be a handful, especially if they’re young and you have a big family. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to keep them safe and entertained. If driving to your destination instead of flying, make sure any car seats are correctly affixed and try your best to control the in-car environment. This can entail setting boundaries; that is, what is and what isn’t appropriate to do in the car. Encourage quiet activities like using coloring books or watching quiet movies. Also, check out our previous article on keeping your kids safe in the car and consider our baby mirror if traveling with a baby. If traveling by plane, consider bringing ear plugs to placate agitated children. This will also be a preventative measure against potential noise-induced agitation before it occurs. A family vacation is a great way to bond with your family and make memories which will last forever. Planning one isn’t easy, especially if you’re bringing kids, but it is doable and can even enhance your experience, making sure everyone gets to be involved. Pick a destination everyone will enjoy, jam-pack your days with fun activities, and you’ll be well on your way to the perfect family vacation: safe, exciting, and with memories to share for many years to come!
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