Holidays are, without a doubt, the highlight of anyone’s year, and having the kids with you is an experience that will last a lifetime. Travelling with children is never easy, but it is always worthwhile, it’s one of the main reasons we travel with kids. But booking a family vacation can be stressful. Here are 6 things to consider when booking a family holiday in 2021, to make your holiday as stress-free and relaxed as possible.
Children’s excitement at the unusual sights and sounds of a new place inspires new levels of appreciation in their parents, while their lack of self-consciousness allows the entire family to participate more completely in the customs and traditions of your selected location. Family vacations aren’t as simple to organize as solo or couple vacations formerly were, but if you can book the right trip, Cheap Flights, and you enjoy the thrill of arranging your vacation as a family, you’ll have a fantastic time!
This is a collaborative post.
Things To Consider When Travelling During A Pandemic
Before we begin, I must stress that the most important thing to consider when booking a family holiday in 2021 is that you always consider the Covid Travel Restrictions at the time of booking your holiday. This includes both from the country you live in and what requirements there are before you go on holiday and on return from your family holiday, as well as the requirements on arrival in your holiday destination country. Things to consider are:
- Are you allowed to travel to the country you’re wanting to visit?
- Do you have to take Covid tests before you leave, what type of test, how much do the tests cost, and how far in advance do you and all members of your family have to do them?
- Do you have to have been vaccinated before you leave, and what proof of vaccination are you required to show?
- What are the isolation or quarantine requirements in your choose holiday destination country?
- What are the return requirements for when you are ready to go home, will you have to isolate or quarantine on return?
Things change all the time regarding travelling in a pandemic, so make a point of staying up to date with the rules and regulations, as well as take all precautions necessary. For an insight into what to expect, check out our family holiday to Dubai during a pandemic when we went in December 2020.
Here are a few ways to guarantee you and the kids enjoy the perfect family holiday:
1. Consider where you wish to take your family on holiday.
Let’s face it, in your list of things to consider when booking a family holiday, geography hasn’t necessarily been a consideration in years gone by, but it is now. There are a few factors that will influence where you end up:
- Time spent in flight (preferably less than 4 hours)
- Please keep it hot and sunny!
- Beaches that are nice (sandy and open, not rocky and overcrowded)
- Activities for the whole family
- Coronavirus restrictions
Every family is unique, with children of varying ages, so if you’re largely going away for the sun, sea, and sand, there are hundreds of European resorts to pick from. It’s a good idea to give the kids an idea of what to expect wherever you’re going. It’s simple to offer kids of any age an introduction to your destination’s culture, sights, and food with the help of a few books and websites. They’ll be much more involved in learning while they’re gone because they’ll be better prepared for new things.
2. Choose the best type of accommodation to suit your family’s needs
One of the most important things to consider when booking a family holiday is the accommodation, and thankfully there are lots of different styles to choose from.
- Hotels — Because all-inclusive hotels are frequently the cheapest choice for family vacations, this can be a deciding factor for most families.
- Villas are ideal if you want more room, a private pool, and are willing to cook for yourself. Most of them will also come with a washing machine, which, when you have kids is a lifesaver on holiday – you might not want to do the laundry on holiday, but you will need to if you have kids.
- Villas inside resorts provide the best of both worlds: the convenience of a hotel and the privacy of a villa. You receive access to the resort’s services and eateries, as well as a living room, kitchen, outside space, and more bedrooms.
- Apartments – Typically smaller and with less outside space, yet in desirable areas. They are ideal if you don’t plan to spend a lot of time in them, and can often be considerably cheaper.
- Camping, glamping, and mobile homes are all excellent options for low-cost vacations.
Private villas are preferred by most people since they provide more living space, separate bedrooms, a private pool, and a kitchen. I also find that eating out for every meal while on vacation is a lot of work, so we like the convenience of a villa and the opportunity to pack a picnic to take to the beach.
A holiday resort is a terrific alternative if you have older children since they will make friends around the pool and enjoy the kids’ groups.
Here’s a guide if you’re considering booking your family holiday accommodation using AirBnB.
3. Consider booking package trips for your perfect Family holiday.
Before I had children, as do most individuals, you do everything you can to avoid package vacations. They want to be self-sufficient travellers who can explore and locate fantastic deals on their own.
However, once you have a family, most family holiday trips offer far better value when booked as part of a package. For example, if you plan a package family vacation to Spain, you may be able to find low-cost flights and holiday accommodation together. However, if you’d purchased everything separately, the flights alone would have cost nearly as much as the entire vacation!
4. Online Check-ins
Always check in online as soon as you can as it will save you from a lot of hassle. Such as you’d get seats together and you wouldn’t have to bug the staff to accommodate you for that. It can be a little stressful but always check in online to save yourself from that stress later. Check the start time for online check-in and set a reminder on your phone so you can do it as soon as possible!
If you’re flying on a cheap airline I’d recommend paying that bit extra to seat your family together, especially if your children are little. It’s one less thing to worry about, and in the larger scheme of things, it’s a small price to pay, but one of those things to consider when booking a family holiday that can really help make it all less stressful.
5. Pre-book your airport transportation and holiday car rental
If you are going to use a transfer service, make sure you look for a really reliable private transfer, or private airport taxi, and schedule it ahead of time – that’s always a good one to tick off your list as early as possible!
Alternatively, some find it easier the transport your family to the airport in your own vehicle which means you will need to book airport parking well in advance to get the cheapest rates with space as close to the airport as possible, or at least one with a regular shuttle bus to get you all from the airport car park to the airport itself. Anyone who has tried to lug 4 suitcases, 2 car seats, 1 stroller, and 2 exhausted children from a cheap car park in a field onto an airport transfer bus at 5 a.m. knows that it is ALWAYS worth spending a few extra dollars to make your life easier.
When travelling with children, and if you are planning to hire your holiday car rental, always arrange rental vehicle collection on arrival at your destination.
Tip: If you’re renting a car in your location, once you as a family have cleared immigration and you’ve collected your luggage, find somewhere to settle close to the entrance, and then one parent should go ahead to fetch the rental car. Picking up a rental car is one of the slowest and most inconvenient processes, and if 20 families from your flight all use the same rental vehicle company, it may take well over an hour (if not longer!) to get to the line and obtain your car. Try to get there as quickly as possible, but also make sure your family are settled somewhere safe and comfortable as they may have to wait a while for you.
I hope you’ve found this post useful. There are so many things to consider when booking a family holiday that it can feel overwhelming sometimes. Also remember to consider budget, length of stay vs distance, and most importantly during these times, what the Covid Travel Restrictions are before you book. As these can change at very short notice, you should always have good travel insurance to cover these and other eventualities.