Who doesn’t want to get the most out of their summer vacation time? In addition to researching summer vacation ideas and finding a trip that the family will love, there are lots of ways you can increase your chances of having a perfect trip. These handy tips will help you have a stress-free vacation.
Planning & Packing Tips
- For family vacations on a budget, traveling during shoulder season, or in between seasons, is one way to avoid crowds and save you money. If you’re not worried about the kids’ school schedule, May and September are great months to visit the beach. If you love snow travel, consider travelling in the beginning of December. If the timing is better, wait until March and April when many ski towns are still in full swing.
- When you start planning activities, pick a few things you want to do but also keep an open mind. You never know when you’ll stumble across an interesting café or find a cool junk shop you’ll want to browse through.
- If you know you want to go the local theme park or other ticketed adventure, check online for fun places for kids to go before you head over. You can usually get tickets for cheaper online.
- Vacation rentals are a great way to save money on your stay. With multiple bedrooms, you can house the whole family together and not have to worry about adjoining rooms or being across a resort from the rest of the family. Most rentals also come with a kitchen, which can save you hundreds of dollars in dining out costs. Other perks like a personal pool, beach front access, in-unit laundry sweeten the deal.
Car Travel Tips
- Before you leave, take the car in for a tune up. Who knows how much of a delay a flat tire or running out of gas will be, especially on a vacation with kids?
- Map out your trip and plan your stops ahead of time. Find places to stay along the way that include perks like breakfast the next morning or discounts to a nearby restaurant.
- Pack a cooler with food and snacks to keep the troops going to your next planned stop. It will also save you from having to buy so much once you are on the road.
- If you have children with you, pack them plenty of fun things to do in the car! Create a folder with blank paper, coloring pages, puzzles and activities. Consider filling a plastic sandwich bag with crayons and colored pencils. Make sure to also include a pencil sharpener that catches the shavings. We don’t recommend markers, as they can make a mess.
Air Travel Tips
- The cheapest day to book your flight is on Tuesdays about 50 days before you fly. Flights later in the day are also typically cheaper than early morning flights, and flying midweek can also save you hundreds of dollars.
- Once travel day is here, arrive early! Getting to the airport early is one of those age old flight tips that really can’t be stressed enough. There’s nothing worse than getting caught up in security and missing your flight, or having to run frantically with your family to the gate. Avoid the stress and play it safe by arriving at least two hours prior to your flight.
- Similar to your car travel, make sure you and the kids have plenty to do while flying.
Check out more tips and travel hacks here.