How to Plan a Family Vacation
April 13 2018
April 13 2018
For many, the very thought of family vacation planning is stressful. And there is a slew of very valid excuses in favour of actually not planning one. If this is true for you, some of the thoughts that have already crossed your mind are probably somewhere along the lines of; you have work obligations; it’s expensive; travelling with children is difficult!
The reality, however, is that the positive aspects of travelling as a family far outweigh any negatives and everyone in your family is bound to benefit from a little vacation. What’s more, travelling with children is hugely important because it helps in their development, encourages adaptability and connectedness, offers ample learning experiences and better opens their minds to different people, languages, flavours and cultures. And as a family, it allows you to all take a necessary break away from mundane daily routines and allows you to relax and recharge together, allowing you to connect to each other in the best ways and create memories that will last a lifetime.
If you would like to plan an unforgettable vacation for your precious family, here is how you can go about it:
Step 1: Brainstorm
While it might be fun to pull out a world globe with your kids, spin it and ask them to close their eyes and point at a destination, it may not be the most practical way to go about your family vacation planning. Naturally, you need to consider the most amazing possible destination for your whole family. One of the best ways to do this is to start by writing a list of the activities your family likes to do together. Perhaps it’s going to museums, going on hikes or heading to the beach—whatever these activities are, write them all down. Once you have a good idea of these activities, think about which of the following types of destinations would most resonate with your family:
Step 2: Decide on your budget
Once you have decided which type of holiday would be perfect for your family vacation, it’s time to figure out your budget so you can choose your perfect destination. Having a good idea of what budget you are working with helps you do decide whether you can afford to go abroad or if you will need to keep it local. Not sure where to start with your budget when family vacation planning? Here are a few guidelines:
Step 3: Plan your dates carefully
Whether you want to travel smart in order to avoid peak season (and the associated inflated travel prices) or the crowds, it’s important to plan your travel dates carefully. You want to ensure that you can travel during school holidays while getting the best prices and weather, but this may mean travelling to other parts of the world. Travelling during the summer holidays in the UK may mean heading to winter elsewhere. But in places like Mauritius, this is hardly a problem, with phenomenal year-round weather and it would mean travelling in their off-peak season, which in turn, means better prices for your family trip. Take a look at your family’s schedules and commitments and see what might be possible in terms of travel dates.
Step 4: Buy your airline tickets (if applicable)
Once you have your dates locked down it’s time to book your airline tickets if you are going abroad. Usually, you can get the best airfares when booking in advance so it’s good to get on this as soon as you can while family vacation planning. You can take a look at sites such as Skyscanner to find the best possible fares for your dates. Remember that airlines limit the number of bags you can take onboard, so ensure that your kids travel as light as possible (it’s also very difficult looking after your kids as well as all of the luggage, so make sure your whole family packs smart!).
Step 5: Book your accommodation
Once the dates and flight tickets are in the bag, it’s time to book your accommodation. Look at the different options and prices during the family vacation planning phase to make sure you are getting the best deal. Things to consider at this stage are: the location (is it conveniently close to the attractions you want to see as well as shops and restaurants?), what has been included in the price, what the overall visitor ratings are (including cleanliness and value-for-money ratings) and if there are all-inclusive options (which really might be the way to go for a stress-free family holiday).
Step 6: Book your activities
If there are particular things that you know that you want to do (and you know are popular) it’s a good idea to book these ahead. Try not to overdo your family vacation planning by booking and planning every second of every day ahead of time. Rather book the absolute essentials and the activities you and your family just can’t miss out on (a special show or a dinner at a Michelin star restaurant for example) and let the rest unfold organically.
Step 7: Check your travel documents
The last thing you want is to plan your entire family holiday only to find out that your passports are no longer valid. It can often take quite a bit of time to get new passports so make sure that you check your family’s travel documents early on and get the process going. Keep in mind that children need passports no matter how old they are when travelling internationally.
If you are looking for the ultimate family destination with a little something for everyone, then you can’t go wrong with Mauritius. And what’s more, any one of our three child-friendly Sun Resorts hotels in Mauritius (which offer all-inclusive packages) is bound to be the perfect playground for your sublime family vacation in paradise.