Family trips can be the highlight of any year, but they sometimes get more difficult to plan when including different age groups -- from great-grandparents to young children. Young Hoon Kim, associate professor of hospitality and tourism management, is an expert world traveler and says while there is no pre-set perfect vacation, planning and forethought can make any vacation more cost-efficient and enjoyable for all.
"If everyone communicates from the start, the trip will be filled with special memories," he says.
- Before making any decisions, discuss the trip's purpose with all attendees. Will the group be together every hour or meet up in the evenings?
- Knowing how much each person can spend will determine the destination, housing, daily events and meals. Camping or staying in a place with kitchen facilities are great ways to keep costs down.
- Poll friends for favorite destinations. Tourism bureaus can provide recommendations, discounts and free travel materials. And websites like TripAdvisor.com also can provide insight on restaurants, accommodations and activities
- So each person has an opportunity to be involved in the planning, give everyone an assignment, such as arranging a meal or activity.
- These vacations are about family, so be sure to engage. Limit use on phones. If work is a must, set aside a specific time to check in and then check out.
- Plan for health emergencies by bringing a well-stocked first-aid kit. Know where the major hospitals in the area are.
- Ensure accessibility for all attendees. Those with limited mobility or medical conditions might prefer a resort to camping or amusement parks. Daycare or day camp could be great for young children uninterested in sightseeing
- Spend quality time together such as meals, game nights and group activities. Teamwork will create the most rewarding experience.