Essential Tips for a Family Holiday
With spring in full swing, many thoughts are turning to the annual family holiday and how to spend it this year. Of course, it’s not as simple as just finding a place, booking it and that’s everything ready until the day of the flight, especially when you have a whole brood to consider. If you leave it too long, you can also forget some of the essentials, so with that in mind, here are some of the key things to remember when organising and preparing for a family holiday.
Pick somewhere the kids will enjoy
The adventure of a road trip and exploring a country from top to bottom might seem like fun to you, but kids on the other hand won’t be so keen to spend half of their holiday or more in a car. Choose a warm, sunny destination that they’ll enjoy, with accommodation that has plenty of facilities such as swimming pools, playground and fun leisure activities. Holiday villages are good in this respect and destinations like the Algarve and Benalmadena give both the adults and the kids chance to relax and have fun.
You want to visit somewhere close, rather than spend hours and hours on a long haul flight, otherwise the kids will get tired and restless on the journey over. And although you may prefer an action-packed itinerary when you get there, it’s better to line up just a few short activities and see how things go. Remember that you’re on holiday and that the main aim of the game is to relax!
Check to see if you have to get any vaccinations before you go. You should also research to make sure you know where to go for help if required (your hotel is likely to be able to give you this, of course, too). Think about the requirements of yourself and your children, such as if you’ll need to buy nappies and where you can buy them.
Make sure the kids will be entertained
Keeping the kids entertained makes a holiday easier for both them and you, whether on the plane, in the hotel, in the restaurant, on day trips etc. A few well-chosen items can stave off boredom and can also save you from having to take too much luggage. Think about bringing crayons, video games, books or magazines. Consider too the hotel facilities. The hotel can do you a good turn on this front with facilities such as children’s pools, table tennis, kids clubs, mini-football and pool tables. And on that note…
Check the hotel facilities
You need to know that your hotel has all the facilities to match your family’s requirements. Does it have a family room or twin room and enough beds? If you’re going somewhere nice and warm, does the room have air conditioning and decent showering facilities so that you can all stay clean and fresh, rather than hot, sweaty and bothered? Don’t forget about the location either. How far is your hotel accommodation from everything else? Is there public transport to nearby towns or places of interest, or are you in the middle of nowhere?
Have your passports in order
It’s important to have yours and your family’s passports in order. Children under 16 must have their own passport — even babies have to — although they can travel on the parents’ passport if they’re already included on it and are accompanied by the parents themselves. If you’re applying for a passport for your baby, the baby must be in the picture by themselves, so no toys or accessories! You may find it more convenient to take the child to a photographer and have their passport photo taken instead of in a passport photo booth.
Take note of the essentials above and you can get your holiday off to a magical start. The thought you put into your destination and how you spend the holiday before can save you some toil and trouble once you arrive, making for a much happier family holiday.