Although the entire family anxiously looks forward to summer vacations, there are years when everything just seems to go wrong. From last-minute changes in flights due to inclement weather to stress over what to pack and what to leave, there is always something to create last minute panic. This year, why not make the most of your family vacation by planning ahead for anything that ‘could’ go wrong? Here are three tips to help relieve a great deal of the stress so that you can finally enjoy a family vacation like it’s meant to be enjoyed.
1. Book Family Friendly Hotels
Once you’ve decided where you want to go and have booked your flight tickets, it’s time to start researching hotels and perhaps other types of lodgings. Family-friendly hotels are probably going to be your best bet because they have amenities to make things easier on mom and dad and much more fun for the little ones. Choose hotels with play areas and activities for kids and you will take a load of stress off yourselves. Why not let the hotel staff entertain the kids for a bit so that you can sit there poolside for a bit of R&R. Believe it or not, there really are hotels like this!
2. Research and Plan Activities in Advance
If there is one piece of advice you should always pay attention to it would be to plan extra activities, but realistically choose the most important ones first. If you plan for more things that you can possibly get into a summer vacation, you’ll always have a Plan B in case something prevents you from doing Plan A. For example, on day two you decide to go to the beach, but the weather has something else in store for you. Perhaps there’s a children’s museum or an indoor attraction you have on your list which you can substitute. Always plan for extra activities ‘just in case.’
3. Leave the Car at Home
There is nothing more stressful than finding a parking spot at the airport near enough to your terminal. With all that luggage and kids in tow, it’s next to impossible to get from your parking garage to the terminal without a huge amount of stress. While taxis could be an option, it is probably easier to book a chauffeured van or SUV. Some cities have a car service set up for times just like this. In the Minneapolis/St Paul region, there is a Twin Cities Car Service that provides a chauffeur, a nice selection of vehicles to book and a knowledgeable driver who can get you to your gate without always relying on dispatch or the GPS. For what you’d pay for parking your car, you can get chauffeured in style to begin your vacation without undue stress.
While there are other things you can do to help make the most of your family vacation this year, these are by far the greatest assets when seeking a stress-free vacation with the kids. However, don’t forget to plan for some mom and dad time too! Make sure that family-friendly hotel has a childcare center so that you can leave the kids long enough to enjoy an evening out by yourselves as a couple. Have fun with the entire family but remember that you deserve some quality alone time as well. When all is said and done, everyone will have had the time of their lives and no one will even notice that mom and dad were MIA for a single night. Wouldn’t that be nice?