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The Best Family Vacation Hacks

foxtailMoneyMaker / 2 Feb, 17 /

The Best Family Vacation Hacks

If you are in the process of creating a vacation plan for your family, you might be feeling a bit overwhelmed by the process. From sippy cups to plane tickets, there is an awful lot to remember, and with so many people to consider, the list is probably growing even as you check things off.

That said, it's important to keep in mind that this is your vacation too, and vacations are meant to be fun. All too often, the parents get the short end of the stick when it comes to vacation fun because they're too worried about getting it right. Therefore, it's best to plan the important things well, and let the rest go.

Here's a list of things to do to ensure your vacation goes off without a hitch while still skipping the overwhelming stress that tends to creep in when microplanning comes into play. Also included are a few of our favorite tips and tricks for making the entire event go as smoothly as possible.

Choose Wisely

One of the most important parts of planning a vacation for a group of people is picking the perfect vacation destination. This can be difficult when you are working with a variety of ages and interests, but it's not impossible, and is absolutely worth the extra effort.

This is because a vacation that revolves solely around one age group or another is going to leave some of the family members feeling bored and whiney. This, in turn, tends to lead to bad moods and arguments, neither of which make for a very fun vacation.

So how do you avoid this? The best option is to choose a destination that has something for everybody. This might be an enormous theme park such as Disney World. It could also be a more natural place like a beautiful beach or the mountains. Consider your family's interests and find something that you know everyone will enjoy.

If it isn't possible to find something for everyone in one place, try to find a city that has multiple attractions for various ages and interests. This will give you plenty to choose from, and will ensure that everyone gets at least one day at an attraction that appeals to them.

Rent Big

Let's face it, hotel rooms are miserably small. This is especially true when the entire family is attempting to cram into one for a week.

Instead of suffering through a week of feeling like a bunch of sardines, find a condo or house to rent. Unlike hotel rooms, houses and condos offer full kitchens and the privacy of individual bedrooms. Additionally, many of these properties also have multiple bathrooms and a private swimming pool.

Most major cities have a variety of short-term rental properties to choose from, so you are sure to find an ideal place for your family to settle down for the duration of your vacation.

Also, look for a place that is beautifully designed. You want to enjoy where you're staying and not feel like it's a bottom-of-the-barrel solution.

Travel Happy

Complaints from kids can make a long car or plane ride seem even longer. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the amount of complaining you hear.

Be sure to pack snacks and drinks to ward off any mid-trip hunger that may cause whining. The best snacks are filling and should include items such as nuts, fruits, and whole grain crackers.

If you forget to pack these, don't stress; simply stop at a convenience store to pick some up. If you are going on an airplane, you will need to purchase drinks at a store in the airport after going through security, so packing them isn't even something that needs to be added to your to-do list.

It's also a good idea to purchase a few small toys or books before the trip. Hide these items in a backpack or diaper bag and bring them out one-at-a-time over the course of the trip. New items hold the attention of children longer and make for excellent souvenirs.

As a final word of advice, we recommended bringing car seats on flights for young children. Not only will this keep your little one safe, it will also help keep them from squirming around and bothering other passengers.

Pack Well

As parents, we all want to be prepared for anything. However, sometimes it can be more stressful to be overpacked than it is to be underpacked. Therefore, it's important to carefully consider what you pack.

Of course, you will definitely want to pack anything you know you will need on the trip. This will include items such as clothes, toiletries, medications, diapers, wipes, and a sippy cup. You will also want to pack up anything you will probably need that may be hard to find (or expensive to purchase) once you get where you are going. Also, don't forget to pack your supplements so you stay healthy the whole trip through.

With those things packed, you should probably stop adding to your bags. Most things that are needed during a trip can be purchased at a local box store. Therefore, items such as an extra sippy cup, food, and tweezers can be left behind without worry.

Get Healthy

A huge fear of many parents is a family member falling ill during vacation. In order to prevent this, it's a good idea to stay as healthy as possible in the weeks leading up to your trip. This means eating a healthy, balanced diet, taking your vitamins, and paying a visit to the chiropractor before you leave. You may also need to stock up on medications before you head out.

Living well and doing well includes taking a relaxing vacation from time to time. We hope these tips help you relax and enjoy your next getaway with your family.

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