Family Travel - The Opportunities That Last A Lifetime
Family travel gives us opportunities to share quality time with our loved ones. If done well, this can be the perfect time to build the close relationships we long to have.
It does take extra time and effort to plan family vacations and weekend getaways that will be fun for every member of the family. With the differences of age, interests and even physical abilities of each family member, it is necessary to research and communicate well to plan a successful trip. This extra effort is greatly rewarded.
It is the goal of this website to help families create the family travel experiences that will strengthen family ties. Since most families today are extremely busy, we want to assist in your travel research to simplify your efforts of finding travel experiences that would be appropriate for your families. We can help you explore the possibilities and discover what you are looking for.
Family travel can come in many different forms. Whether you are looking for all inclusive family resorts, Disney travel packages, family cruise travel, Texas family vacations, educational family travel or just places in your area that make great weekend getaways, there are ways to make the most of each trip and plan in advance so you can give your family the best experiences of their lives.
We would also like to offer some ideas on how to involve your whole family in the process, not just in the travel itself but also in the planning. It is very important to involve the children - to make it a family project. If the children are not involved in the planning then they will not feel as much a part of the trip. If the children are unhappy, then the trip is not going to be the wonderful experience it should be. In multi-generational travel, this would include all children of all ages.
Many times the parents (or whoever is paying for the travel expenses) want to surprise everyone or treat them to what the paying person thinks would be the best experience. Unfortunately, this can backfire and cause frustration or resentment and put a real damper on the whole trip. If, however, everyone who is going on the trip is allowed to be part of the discovery and planning process, the trip will belong to everyone and there can be a wonderful spirit of excitement and anticipation even months before the actual travel experience. This can be a magical time for opening channels of communication and really getting to know one another. It can be very interesting to discover the dreams and interests of your family that do not come up in your family's everyday conversations.
Each member of the family can share what his/her best vacation would be. Where would you go? What would you like to do? What would you like to see? Is there any special reason for this dream? Did someone tell you about it? Did you see it on TV or in a movie? If you are an adult, did you go there as a child? If so, tell everyone about the experience. What a great way to open up to one another and really begin to see one another as a real person - not just the place that person holds in the family. Take notes or if the family members are older, have each one write this information down to be considered in the family planning.
Set a time to meet again. If your family is parents and children living in the same household, you might want to set aside a time each week or whatever time suits your family. If you are a multi-generational or extended family, you might want to meet in a month. If you are located in different states or countries, you might want to meet on Skype or a telephone conference, or just through email, IM, Facebook or whatever means you generally use for communication. The important thing is to set up a time to follow up so you can begin to plan your trip.
The person who is coordinating the trip can take all the family ideas that were gathered from the first meeting and start to research/ consult to see what is available that would be fun and dream-fulfilling for everyone. It might not be the exact location, but knowing the interests and dreams of the whole family will enable you to put in extra touches that will make each family member feel this is his/her vacation. Get the information on a few of the trips you have found and report back to everyone at the follow up meeting. Get the feed back and proceed with the plans until you have your family trip planned.
After the trip is planned, let the children - and everyone else - start to save for their souvenirs and other extras for the trip. Maybe for some gift occasions like birthday, a contribution to the travel fund or a needed backpack or special clothes can be given. This can help with the vacation budget, but it will also allow for an opportunity to set reasonable expectations for trip so you will not have to be saying no or getting frustrated with children asking for more during the vacation itself.
Be certain to plan in some casual days for the children to just stay at the hotel and swim or play games or relax. This will be important so they will not become too tired. If you are flying, be sure too allow for recuperation from jet lag. This can sometimes be especially difficult for children. It is also important to plan alternate plans if weather is an issue for yourfirst plans. You do not want to be stuck in a room with children who are bored. Take along some favorite games or check in advance to see if the hotel has activities that you can rentor if they are included in your room arrangements.
If you are flying, be sure to take an empty water bottle for any delays so you can at least get water out of the water fountain. Take snacks for everyone. This can save you lots of money, plus you do not risk the airport not having your children's favorites. If you do not need them at the airport, they will come in handy for the rest of your trip.
Family Travel is one of the fastest growing segments of the travel industry. For this reason,suppliers are adding new properties and services everyday. It is very difficult to know every new addition, but we will focus on a few of the markets we feel will be most helpful for families.The specific markets we will be focusing on will include:
All Inclusive Family Resorts
Educational Family Travel
Family Cruise Travel
Family Adventure Vacations
Disney Travel Packages
As we continue to learn more about Family Travel, we will continue to build and update this site to keep up with the changes in the Family Travel segment of the travel industry. Come back often to see our progress and to help you and your family to create those Family Travel - Opportunities That Last A Lifetime.