Our “5 Minutes with Nana” columnist, Teresa Kindred, joins us today to share her multigenerational travel tips and encourage you to bring together grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles or other extended family for memorable family vacations.
When our 5 children were young we weren’t afraid to load them into the van and travel long distances, even though some of our friends called us crazy.
Now that we are grandparents we still love traveling and we especially love when our children and our grandchildren go with us.
Multigenerational travel is a wonderful way for different generations in a family to bond and create lasting memories. But the more people who go on a trip, the more complicated it can be.
By planning ahead and talking things out before the trip, families can make the trip go smoother and eliminate some potential problems.
5 Multigenerational Travel Tips
- Know your budget.
Discuss what each family member can afford to spend and how much each activity will cost. Knowing prices in advance will let everyone know which activities they can afford to do and which ones they can’t.
Not everyone wants to do the same thing and everyone has different physical and financial limitations. Be considerate and don’t force anyone to do anything they don’t want to do.
Food for a lot of people is expensive. Have everyone chip in and buy groceries together. Make things like chili or spaghetti that feed a lot of people for not a lot of money.
- Stay Together
When considering where to stay, think about renting a house or condominium so that everyone can be together.
Hotel rooms can be confining and it’s hard for it to feel like a family vacation when everyone is not under the same roof.
You’ll also have better options for preparing food for family meals which helps to reduce vacation costs.
- Be Easy-Going
Realize that families are made up of unique individuals who all have their own way of doing things.
Overlook each others quirks and hopefully they will overlook yours. (Yes, you have them too!)
- Plan your Drive Time
It’s hard for our family to afford air fare so we usually drive.
If you are driving a long distance consider traveling at night. Little children do not like being strapped in car seats for hours at a time. We’ve found if we travel at night they sleep and don’t mind the ride so much. If you have to travel during the day be prepared to take lots of breaks.
- Start Planning The Next Trip
After you get home, unpack and get all the dirty clothes washed, start planning the next adventure.
One of the hardest things about traveling with other family members is finding a time when everyone can go.
Consider making your multigenerational family vacation the same week every year so everyone knows not to plan anything for that week.
What About You?
Have you thought about inviting your parents to go with you on a vacation?
If you haven’t, perhaps you should consider it. Not only will you have some extra help with the children, you will get to spend quality time with family in a different setting. Often families are more relaxed and less stressed away from home.
Having fun together doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Many families enjoy camping together or going to family reunions.
No matter how far you travel or how long you stay, the important thing is to have fun and make memories. Multigenerational traveling can be a great way to do both.
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Written by Teresa Kindred, founder of nanahood.com