Family vacations are meant to be fun and exciting, but sometimes they can be rather stressful. You have to plan out the trip and book your travel and accommodations. Then comes the hassle of packing your suitcase with everything you’ll need to bring along. And if you’re a parent to a young child, you have to pack their suitcase too! It’s a lot that gets put on your plate for what is essentially a few days or a week away from reality.
Since it can often feel pretty overwhelming at times, you need to find a way to make your vacation a breeze. Because yes, it is absolutely possible! To prepare for your next adventure, here are nine family vacation tips to make traveling easier.
1. Get Organized & Plan Ahead
Being spontaneous is great, but when it comes to traveling, it’s nice having a plan. Make sure you book your flights and hotel in advance so everything is good to go. You may even want to reserve a car ahead of time if you plan to drive.
If there are any events you plan to attend, make sure you purchase tickets (if needed) and block off time in your vacation itinerary for all your bucket list items so they’re not missed. Sticking to your plans gives you a better chance at doing everything you hoped for while on your trip.
2. Prepare Your Kids for the Trip
One of the must-do family vacation tips is to prepare your children for the trip ahead of time. Talk about the trip itself, what the journey will be like to get there, and all the fun things you’ll do once you arrive. It’s a great way to get kids excited for their upcoming adventure. Older children may want to look at books or websites on their destination to learn more about it.
3. Coordinate Your Luggage With a Luggage Set
One very simple thing you can do to make traveling easier for your next family vacation is to coordinate your luggage. By purchasing a luggage set, you ensure that everyone in your family has matching suitcases. You’ll have a simpler time spotting all of your luggage at baggage claim, as opposed to having to remember the colors, sizes, and details of everyone else’s luggage.
The great thing about this is many companies offer luggage sets you can purchase with ease. This way, you can pick out a set you like, order it, and everyone can match. Even better? Choose a style or color that’s going to stand out and you’ll be able to quickly identify your luggage and be on your way out of the airport.
We have a set from Mia Toro and love it!
4. Cross Pack Between Suitcases
When you need to check your luggage at the airport, there’s always the concern that something may go wrong. Your luggage could be delayed or even misplaced, especially if you’re catching connecting flights during your travels. And that’s the last thing anyone wants when they’re trying to get away for a nice, relaxing vacation.
Just in case something like this happens, it’s smart to cross pack between the suitcases your family is bringing. You can put a pair of back-up clothes in someone else’s luggage so you’ll be prepared should something happen to yours. This way, you’ll at least have another outfit to wear while you wait for your suitcase to arrive.
5. Maximize Space in Your Luggage With Cubes & Folders
That last tip may have you thinking there’s absolutely no room to stash extra outfits in someone else’s suitcase. However, you can maximize the space you have by using things like packing cubes and folders. This gives you a little extra wiggle room, while also keeping your belongings organized and tidy. It’ll make unpacking so much easier too!
6. Download Games or Movies & Bring Toys to Entertain Kids
If you have a long flight ahead of you, dealing with grumpy kids is every parent’s worst nightmare. That means you need to find a way to keep your kids busy during the flight when they’re not asleep. Before you head off for your vacation, download some games or videos to a tablet so your child can enjoy them while on the plane.
Another great option is to bring along some non-tech toys as well. Coloring books and activity pads are perfect for keeping children busy so they aren’t disturbing other passengers. Plus, young kids will get excited about having something special to play with.
7. Stash Snacks in Your Bag to Grab When Hungry
Hungry kids aren’t much fun to deal with either! And if the airline you’re flying with doesn’t have snacks that the child is interested in, you could be dealing with quite the disaster during the flight. Make sure you bring a few travel-friendly snacks to munch on when you and the kids start getting hungry. This way, everyone stays happy and full!
8. Deal With Jet Lag Effectively
Jet setting across time zones? Then it’s kind of inevitable that jet lag is going to hit you and your family once you arrive at your destination. If you don’t want feelings of tiredness and fatigue to interfere with your trip, have a plan for dealing with jet lag so you can make the most of your time away.
You’ll want to begin adjusting to the new time zone as soon as you arrive. This may mean you’ll have to stay up late the first night, so you’ll need to find ways to stay awake. You can get outside and explore the place you’re staying, grab some food, etc. Whatever works for you! It’ll be hard, but definitely worth it.
9. Relax & Enjoy the Trip
And finally, remember to kick back and enjoy your vacation. You shouldn’t spend your time away stressed out and full of worry. Enjoy yourself. Let loose. And have a little fun with your family before you have to head back to your everyday life.