A family holiday should, in theory, be the highlight of your year. After a long year of working hard, raising your children, and saving up money, you finally have the chance to get away and enjoy your summer vacation. You’ll forget your job for two weeks, pack up the car, and hit the open road, travelling to whichever remote destination you’ve chosen. You’ll have time to wind down, relax, and enjoy yourself in peace. The whole family will have an unforgettable experience, and you’ll all return home a thousand times happier and calmer than you were when you left.
It sounds like a perfect holiday, but as any parent will know, this is very rarely a reality. Family holidays can be extremely stressful. You have so much to think about from organising flights and accommodation, cajoling unruly children to go along with your plans, and ensuring everyone arrives at the destination in one piece. And things always seem to go wrong. Flights get delayed, people get sick, and hotels turn out to be wildly different from the brochure. Overall, these issues can end up making you even more stressed and anxious by the end of the holiday. You may even wonder why you bothered.
But this shouldn’t ever be the case. For many families, the summer is the one chance they have in the year to get away. It should be a time for enjoyment, excitement, and relaxation. A family holiday allows you and your partner to get closer and bond as a couple, and it is great for the children too. It opens them up to the great wide world and teaches them to appreciate new things and respect other cultures.
If you are in the process of planning your next family holiday but are full of anxiety, fear not. Follow these four stress-relieving tips, and you’ll be fully equipped to go on your travels without a worry in the world.
Choose your destination wisely
You and your partner might have some ambitious plans for your holiday destination, but your young kids may have other ideas. When choosing which country to travel to, make sure you take into account the needs, interests, and routines of your children. If your little ones are still small, then a long car journey or multiple transport changes will be a nightmare. You’ll have tears and tantrums as well as constant stops to change nappies. On the other hand, if your kids are teenagers, then you run the risk of bored, mopey kids if there isn’t enough to do to keep them occupied. Make sure you take everyone into account and try to come to a compromise to ensure the whole family is as happy as possible.
Book self-catered accommodation
Although hotels can be a luxury experience and take a lot of the work out of your hands, sometimes they don’t give you the flexibility or freedom you require when dealing with young children. Booking a self-catered accommodation such as a holiday home or villa will allow you to change plans as you need to, and mix up your routine to accommodate your kids. It allows you to cook whenever and whatever you want, without having to wait for your hungry screaming child to be fed in a busy restaurant.
Get your car checked
If you are travelling by car, the last thing you want is to have vehicle troubles hampering your trip. There’s nothing worse than getting a flat tyre or a breakdown in the middle of a lonely stretch of French countryside. Book your car in for a full service before you leave, to ensure you get everything checked and ready to go. If you’ve been delaying getting that oil change, fixing that dodgy clutch, or replacing your worn tyres, don’t leave it to the last minute. Save a bit of money with these wheel and tyre packages if needed.
Plan some fun activities
Children get bored and agitated easily, so make sure you plan some fun activities for everyone to do together as a family. It could be going to the beach or a long hike in the mountains. Or perhaps an adventurous activity such as kayaking or rock climbing. The options are endless and depend on your destination, but whatever you choose, you will ensure your children have a good time, and you make some beautiful memories as a family. Make sure you book these activities well in advance to avoid disappointment or having to deal with the hassle of waiting in a lengthy queue. And remember to have backup plans in the event of a rainy day stuck indoors!
Hope you enjoyed these tips, feel free to add yours below!