When you don’t have the time or budget for a family holiday, heading out on a weekend getaway is a great alternative that gives you the opportunity to enjoy a more condensed version. Of course, you still need to take the time to ensure that you do enough planning and preparation to make a success of the trip. Get it right and you will have memories that you can look back on for years to come. Get it wrong and you will only end up with frustrations and arguments. So, in this blog post, we are going to look closer at just a few of the ways that you can have a family vacation that everyone involved can enjoy.
Don’t Go Too Far Away
The last thing that you want to do is to spend the whole weekend stuck inside the car together, so try to pick a destination that doesn’t involve too much driving to get there. Not only will this minimise the risks of getting into arguments, you will also get to know your local area just a little bit better which is always going to be a positive thing. If you are not going to be driving, start to investigate the public transportation options which are available to you.
Decide on a Destination
Sit down as a family and you can discuss together the best places to visit. Ideally, you should be looking for somewhere which is mutually agreeable for everyone on the trip. Your kids will also get much more excited about the holiday if they have had the opportunity to be involved right from the initial planning stages. Essentially, everything depends on your expectations of the trip. You may just want a quiet weekend on the beach where you can relax and unwind as a family. Perhaps you are looking for something more adventurous like a theme park or a place you can go hiking or biking. Before you settle on anything, it is important that you closely assess your budget, so you know exactly how much money you have available to spend.
Book Everything in Advance
Rather than leaving planning until the last minute, you should book your getaway in advance as much as possible. This way, you are much more likely to get the best deals and you don’t have to go through the stress of rushing around at the last minute. The internet has made it easier than ever to compare prices of travel, accommodation and entertainment options. Sign up for alerts and mailing lists so that you have deals sent directly to you. If you can pick a time of year that isn’t hugely popular, this is when you are more likely to get the best prices.
Plan Out Your Route
Next up, you should plan out the route that you are going to take. Even if you are only going a short distance, it is worth examining closer exactly how you will get there. As well as programming the route into your GPS system, it is also a good idea to have a paper map as a backup. Make a rough timetable of what time you would like to set off and when you expect to arrive. Of course, you can never be fully sure of factors that are out of control like the traffic, but you can at least reduce the chances of getting stuck in a jam by not setting off during rush hour. If you are unlucky enough to get stuck in traffic, make sure that you have plenty of entertainment options available such as games, music, and audiobooks, so that you don’t end up driving each other crazy!
Pack Light But Right
Now is the time to start packing for your trip. Obviously, you don’t want to pile too much stuff into your car as you will only be going away for the weekend, but you also don’t want to forget anything. The best way of striking this balance is by writing out a list of everything that you need to bring with you and ticking it off one by one once each particular item is packed. You should also think about the things that you need easy access to in the car and what can be left in your main luggage. For example, you may want a cooler full of drinks and snacks in the car with you. Also, consider other possible essential items such as a first aid kit, medication, tissues, blankets, and anything else that you can possibly think of. Don’t forget any items which your kids need to drift off to sleep like a security blanket or their favourite teddy bear. Good quality sleep for both you are your kids can make or break your vacation!
Ready Your Vehicle
If you are going to be taking public transportation to your destination, you simply need to check the timetable and give yourself plenty of time to reach the station. However, if you are going to be driving yourself, there are a few preparations which you need to undertake. Buy any items which you need like baby seats – take a look at https://babyseats.reviews/brands/graco. Do all the basic maintenance tasks involved in looking after your vehicle such as checking the oil and tyre pressure. Brush up on any skills that you are unsure of such as how to change a tyre and how to jump start a car. You never know when they may come in handy. Start off with a full tank of gas and ensure that you have the number of your breakdown company just in case the worst should happen along the way.
Follow the Rule of One
The rule of one essentially states that you should only fit in one major activity on each day, rather than trying to pack lots of things into a short space of time. You are much more likely to get the most out of your this single activity rather than rushing around from one to the next. You should also build some downtime into your schedule for napping, eating or simply relaxing. It is this sense of balance which will allow you to have a more enjoyable family vacation. If you are looking for maximum impact, why not try out something for the first time? Kids tend to get very excited by activities that they have never experience before.
Keep Your Calm and Destress
Spending so much time together as a family can be stressful, so you need to take the time to calm yourself down. You don’t want everything to escalate into a huge argument as this could end up ruining your family holiday. Even if you can only be by yourself for a few minutes in the bathroom, there are still some breathing exercises that you can try to destress yourself. If you can successfully calm yourself down without yelling or taking out your frustrations on your family, you can consider this a success.
So, there you have just a few ways that you can plan a family weekend getaway that everyone will enjoy. Give yourself as much time as possible to sort out all the details of your holiday before setting off. Get everyone involved to find out what they are looking for from the trip. Pack carefully and prepare your mode of transportation. Enjoy every minute of your vacation and make sure to take plenty of pictures. Finally, if there is anything which you think you could do better next time, learn from your mistakes!