Are you wanting to plan a family holiday with kids and not sure where to start?
It can all seem a little daunting at first.
- where to go?
- what accommodation to choose?
- how to get your destination?
- who needs which items packed pack?
- when should I book?
Let’s take it step by step to help you discover what you need to plan your holiday with kids.
5 Steps to Plan a Family Holiday with Kids
1. Where to Go?
With thousands of family holiday destinations to choose from how do you find the right fit for your family?
Whilst you can certainly ask friends, family and read travel blogs like this ones destinations page. It really is a matter of what inspires you to travel not what inspires others.
So what inspires you?
Is there a place that has been the backdrop in a movie or television show that has you aching to visit? For example in the Da Vinchi Code the characters navigate their way through France, Italy and the UK. Or perhaps you were inspired during school learning about some ancient civilisations like the Egyptian pyramids? Maybe your travel dream isn’t that elaborate and all you want is some down time as a family to relax. Or you just don’t want to travel that far for whatever the reason.
Once you have narrowed down your choice then start doing some research, this is the time to ask friends, family, Google and visit your local library for travel guides about your chosen family holiday destination.
2. What Accommodation to Choose?
Now that you have your destination, where are you going to stay? The answer will largely be reliant on:
- your budget
- your needs
Every destination will have accommodation to suit your budget, so it really comes down to what you need out of your accommodation.
When we took our family holiday to Sydney with a toddler I really wanted a self-contained apartment to prepare food for my toddler and having a separate sleeping area so that we could stay up later. As my son grew into the pre-school years he was able to sleep through anything and so we chose resorts that offered kids clubs for his age group, like the one we chose at the Shangri-La Tanjung Aru in Kota Kinbalu. Now that he is older whilst he still wakes early he is now self-sufficient to amuse himself before breakfast – I no longer need to wake at the crack of dawn, so I choose accommodation that has a separate area for the kids plus as he is an only child I choose places that are family focused, like the BIG4 Beachlands during our small family holiday to Busselton.
As you can see your needs maybe very different from my needs or your friends needs and your needs will be ever evolving. So it is what you need from your accommodation at that particular time.
Once you have made a list of your needs you will then have to start researching all the accommodation available to narrow down your choices. Then it will come down to budget and before you know it you will have your answer for your holiday with kids.
If you are still feeling a little overwhelmed check out my choosing the right accommodation for your family page.
3. How to Get to Your Destination?
Now that you have your destination and accommodation how are you going to get there?
To start with timing is everything. Whether you are going by road, rail or air you want to choose to travel during times that suit your kids. Again every family is different as to what suits them. I like to travel during the day and arrive at my destination before dark. Others prefer to travel at night as the kids can sleep through the journey. And then sometimes you just don’t get much of a choice.
Whenever and whichever type of travel you are embarking upon remember to have an easily accessible bag filled with drinks, snack and activities for the kids. And if possible schedule in some breaks along the journey so that everyone can get the opportunity to stretch their legs.
For more tips on what to take, creating schedules plus more: check out my getting there travel tips pages on:
4. Who Needs what Items Packed?
I just mentioned packing an easily accessible bag for the journey, but what else should you pack?
Start by thinking about where you are going, when you are going (the climate), and what activities you will be doing. This will give you a good start with what types of clothing to pack.
However I find there are so many more extra bits and pieces to pack. Lucky for you 😉 I love writing lists so check all my family travel packing lists HERE.
5. When Should I Book
To be perfectly honest there is no right or wrong time to book except maybe with booking cruises as cruise lines generally offer discounts when they release the following years cruise itinerary and early bird specials, then cruise lines will offer discounts for any remaining cabins available about 6-4 weeks prior to sailing – of course you then run the risk of not getting the cruise you want.
As for booking accommodation and flights it is just a matter of catching the sales. To do this sign up for e-newsletters from your preferred accommodations and airlines, also follow them on social media. The other tip is to disable your computers cookies and check in regularly with each place for cost fluctuations.
Of course get started on your family holiday planning as early as possible.
This is going to give you the most flexibility to get what you want at the price you want to pay so that you can enjoy your holiday with kids.
Have you got any travel tips planning a holiday with kids?
Please share them in the comments.
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