A long-haul vacation is one of those things that can be a double-edged sword for the family unit. While they can be full of stress and tension, they can also make your family unit stronger and create an abundance of wonderful memories, which is why, for the sake of every member of the family, you’ve got to have an action plan to ensure that your vacation goes as smoothly as possible. Let’s show you some top tips to make sure your long-haul family vacation is everything you want it to be while ensuring you don’t feel the pressure.
Choose the Right Destination
You have to consider what you really want from your vacation. Do you want beaches, hikes in nature, or do you want a mix of everything? Or how much journey time can everybody cope with? When you start to whittle it down to a handful of options, you can then choose how you are going to stay there. Because you don’t need to venture to a hotel if it’s too costly; you can find a villa or you could even go for a caravan holiday!
A caravan holiday is something that’s very popular in the UK. You can find caravan holidays in Devon that are right on the beach, ensuring that you can all have quality time near the sea, which will do a lot for your temperament and your health. Of course, you also need to think about the other practicalities, for example, if you are happy to cook every meal. If you are still watching your pennies, you’ve got to find somewhere that’s walking distance from restaurants and places to eat that the kids will enjoy.
Consider the Travel Times
If you are planning to venture to another country, you’ve got to factor in the time you are leaving. You need to arrive at your destination at a reasonable time, but you also need to return home at a good time too. It might be tempting to book the last flight home to make the most of your last day and minimize the post-vacation blues, but you will still have to check out of your accommodation in the morning, so this could make for a very miserable journey home.
When we’re talking about long-haul travel, one of the best solutions is to fly at night. When you fly overnight, this is one of the better guarantees that your children will sleep! They could be very excited, of course, which means that they will suffer from jet lag, which is why timing is so important.
Involving the Kids in Your Decision
If you’re traveling with young kids under the age of 10, you can talk them through the options and the experiences of each country. When your children hit the age of 4 or 5, they are going to have their own interests, and while they may not be interested in ancient ruins but may have simpler interests like ice cream, this is where you can show them some of the best places in the world with the greatest ice creams, such as Sicily. But when it comes to involving your children in a decision, you’ve got to give them a couple of options, rather than giving them free rein. This doesn’t just manage their expectations but manages your budget as well!
Deciding What You Need From Your Accommodation
Central locations are usually the best option if you’ve got young kids. If you are going on a city break somewhere, you need to stay near the tourist sites but you also need to pick accommodation that is not too cheap because this could very well raise suspicions. There are reasons that certain types of accommodation are cheap! If you stay in a location that’s just out of the city center, you’ve got to ensure it’s not in a district that is excessively noisy. Unless your children are heavy sleepers, if you opt for a location in a clubbing district this could spell havoc for your vacation.
If you don’t know where to go, self-catering is usually the best option. This means you have a space to prepare your meals, and it will have a washer-dryer which can reduce the weight of your suitcase! This is why Airbnbs are more popular these days. And if you’ve got young children in tow, you need to choose carefully. You may love the idea of a villa with a swimming pool and a veranda, but is this going to give you peace of mind? You don’t want to be feeling stressed out for the entirety of your vacation!
Your children will want to take certain toys, but it’s best to leave this until the last minute because they are going to change their minds millions of times. And if your child has a lengthy list of the toys they want to take, you’ve got to limit them to two toys only. Because if they lose them, you won’t be able to replace them!
When it comes to packing, you should be as light as possible. Packing cubes are an amazing tool to have to help you pack strategically, so this can distinguish different family members’ clothes in your suitcase.
Making Time for Jet Lag
Flying long-haul can mean everybody will suffer from this in one way or another. You need to prepare for jet lag because if you land and need to go to sleep, you’ve already missed a day’s worth of fun!
Instead, schedule a couple of days for light activities and gentle exploration so you can get into the swing of vacation mode! And even if the kids hit the wall, let them have a little nap and you can enjoy some downtime!
Do Not Over Plan
One of the biggest mistakes we can all make on vacation is wanting to make the most of it. Your children are going to benefit from simple things. Therefore, give them that rein to do what they want because these are the things that will give you a far more memorable vacation.