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Family Vacation Travel Tips

It's time to pack your bags, load up the car and go on the family vacation...YAY!!!

However, are you dreading all the stress and work?  Are you not looking forward to the long drive?

The family vacation is one of the most memorable times as a child and as a parent.  When your kids grow up and you ask them about memories when growing up, most likely they'll talk about their family vacations.

Also, there's a saying that some families "have" and some families "have done".  I hope your family is a "have done" family!

I've made it my mission to take my family on as many family vacations as possible both short and long.  Some driving, some flying.  Some fun in the sun on the beach, some in the big city seeing the sights.  Sometimes domestically in our USA backyard and sometimes across vast oceans into a foreign country.  I like to call our family vacations more like family adventures as we travel across the world.

I hope to prove to my kids first hand that the world isn't flat.

Along the way, over the many years of traveling we've done, we've learned many family vacation travel tips that have made our adventures a tad more enjoyable.  Made our vacation drives seem shorter and have made the travel time sitting on airplanes, walking through airports, setting up shop in a hotel room or condo just a little smoother.

With all these lessons under our belt.  I'd like to organize them and share them with you.  Watch for the OnFair Family Vacation Travel Tips Videos.  We hope one or more of them will also make your family vacations a tad more enjoyable.

Family Vacation Travel Tip #1: How to Pack the Suitcase

Let me share with you one of the most simple yet dare I say "Genius" travel tip that once we discovered have never traveled without...ever again...even on 2 day trips.

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Family Vacation Travel Tip #2: Give the Kids Their Own Backpack

Many people come to look back on their family vacations, as children, as the most memorable times of their childhood. This being the case, it’s obvious that, as a parent, you want to make the experience as rewarding and enjoyable as possible for your children. You want to make your child feel like an active participant in the family adventure, rather as just another piece of luggage along for the ride. And one way to do this is to allow them to pack, and carry, their own backpack.

family travel tip kids own suitcase

 

Family Vacation Travel Tip #3: Do Research Before You Leave

Once you decide where to take the family for your vacation, do some research online before you leave. Why waste valuable vacation time deciding where to go and what to do when most of this can be decided before you leave?

family travel tip research

 

Family Vacation Travel Tip #4: Know the Currency Conversion

Traveling with the family to a foreign destination brings on the additional problem of currency conversion. It’s always safest, and more economical, to be well aware of the conversion rate before you embark on your trip. You may want to arrange with your bank for a small amount of the foreign currency in question before you leave, as you may need some local money for small contingencies, such as tips or cab fare.  Additionally, be aware that United States currency may be accepted at certain locations, usually those bordering the U. S. with a large tourist trade. This can apply in Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean. But be aware that a currency conversion fee may be built into the price.

family travel tip know conversion

Family Vacation Travel Tip #5: Map Your Path in Advance

Your vacation should really start at home.  Chart your path before you take a single step. Engage your children in the process from the beginning. Do a lot of investigating online, and share this with the family. Children will appreciate being included in the process, allowing them to participate from the beginning, rather than feeling like cargo being hauled along for the ride. Show them pictures of the destination, and explain what you expect to find, and do, once you arrive. Solicit suggestions for activities.

family travel tip maps

Family Vacation Travel Tip #6: Plan 1 Major and 1 Minor Activity

Planning is the key to a successful and enjoyable family vacation. Once you have chosen a destination, decide what you want to achieve at that destination. You don’t have to be as regimented as your average military campaign, but a little planning in advance will help relieve stress and make your trip all the more enjoyable. Know how long you will have to devote to the activities you wish to accomplish, whether it be a full day, half day, or merely an hour. And keep in mind that weather at your destination could call for changes. Plan accordingly, having some back-up indoor activities in reserve. And allow some time to regroup, and restore your enthusiasm, especially when traveling with children.

family travel tip major minor

Family Vacation Travel Tip #7: Soak it All In

A major problem with leisure travel today is that we have become too engrossed with recording the event rather than experiencing it. Too often we are looking at amazing sights through the lens of a camera, or on the viewing screen of a cell phone, rather than drinking it in with our eyes. And what exactly is the point of taking all these photos and films of the event if our memories are dominated by the recording of the experience instead of the experience itself.  Slow down and enjoy yourself. Explore your surroundings. Take a deep breath and relax. Record your surroundings in your mind’s eye before committing it to a more physical medium. If you do this you may find it easier to recall, and live again, the adventure any time you wish. Connecting with your surroundings with your eyes and your heart lends a much more intimate feeling to the experience than merely observing through a camera lens.

family travel tip soak it in

Family Vacation Travel Tip #8: What to do with Pets and Mail

One of the major considerations when taking a family vacation is what to do about things on the home front while you are away. You really don’t want to advertise the fact that you are leaving your home empty and vulnerable, and there are a few things to do to prevent sending this message.

family travel tip pets mail

Family Vacation Travel Tip #9: Check Your Vehicle

Many of our favorite family vacations don’t involve flying off to another part of the world, but instead, taking a road-trip or a family drive with kids. The lure of the open road can be enticing, and some people find nothing more enjoyable than moving from place to place, a different destination each day on the road. But nothing can bring this adventure to a screeching halt quicker than an unhealthy vehicle.

family travel tip check vehicle

Enjoy the drive, be a "have done" and show your kids the world isn't flat!