The long, sunny days are already here and with the school holidays starting soon I thought I would offer some advice for taking your family on holiday abroad. Now, we all know family holidays – especially when small children are involved – can go terribly wrong before you know it and cause us a lot of stress. Hopefully, the tips in this article will help you plan a trip that is stress–free, as cheap as can be, and one that will be the perfect getaway for you and your family.
Planning is key
This sounds obvious when booking a holiday, but it is indeed the most important part. Doing your research before you book can make a stark difference and ensure your holiday is as relaxing and fun–filled as possible.
You don’t want to start off your holiday by agitating the kids on a long-haul flight to the other side of the world! Instead, start off somewhere closer to home; the South of France or Spain, or even some of the Greek islands are only a few hours away on a plane and all have great resorts alongside the weather. Check out reviews of hotels and resorts to see if they suit your family on sites like Trip Advisor.
The weather can also be a key factor. Look ahead at what the average temperature is for the time of year when you are going. Destinations that are too hot can make your children uncomfortable and restless, so knowing this means you can pack the right clothes and equipment.
Holidaying with kids can be tricky because you have limited periods available when the schools are closed, which only results in prices sky rocketing! On average, it can cost a family of four up to £905 more to go away in August compared to July. Unavoidable, yes, but booking early can sometimes save you that bit of extra money. Just got back from your family holiday? Start planning for next year! Get an idea of where you would like to go as early as possible and subscribe to email alerts from airlines and travel comparison sites. This way you can see when bookings are available and you can pick from the best prices and packages. This strategy can end up saving you a small fortune leaving more money for activities once you’re there.
Booking early doesn’t just apply to your flights – get your parking for the airport cheaper by booking early, too. Use price comparison sites such as www.Looking4Parking.com and let them do all the work for you. Services like Meet and Greet parking can make your life so much easier by just allowing you to drive straight to your terminal and not having to make the kids walk or get a bus to the airport.
Make plans for them
We all know how quickly kids get bored so it’s important to have things planned to keep them busy and entertained, but make sure to not overload them. Book them into the kids’ club or arrange for some day trips to places like a waterpark or the beach. Keeping them busy and happy will ensure they have fond memories and will look forward to family holidays in the future.
Keep a similar routine
The last thing you want on your family holiday is a torrent of tantrums, so try and keep the kids’ routine as close to their usual one as possible. Avoid booking flights in the middle of the night or really early on in the day so they don’t miss out on any sleep. It bodes well to keep any nap times they have as well. If they tend to nap at a certain time, make sure this schedule is maintained by getting them to nap in your room or their pram in the shade.
It will also help a lot to bring some of their favourite things along to make the new place feel more familiar from day one. This can be anything from their favourite book to their iPad, or even their favourite cup. Prioritise these little items over anything in your packing as it will be sure to keep your children relaxed and comfortable in the new surroundings.
Don’t let high costs and tantrums ruin your family holiday. Family holidays are supposed to be fun and relaxing and with these tips you can turn the next one into the perfect getaway.
What are your top tips when planning a family holiday abroad?