Top 3 Tips to Avoid Hassle and Enjoy Your Family Holiday

Quite often, parents travelling with children end up getting too stressed out to actually derive any pleasure from the supposed ‘family getaway’. The truth is, the stress stems from parental expectations that are not only misguided and unrealistic, but also entirely incompatible with what your kids want. There are plenty of things you can do (foremost of which is buying a sound family travel insurance policy) to make things run more smoothly and with far less to worry about. To ensure that you and children enjoy the journey, here are some life-saving tips.

Be flexible with your pace

Depending on the age of your children, the pace of how you travel from one location to another is usually determined by the youngest member of your family. It’s not enough to simply buy an excellent family travel insurance package and expect that the rest of the holiday will take care of itself; you need to match your children’s expectations with yours, and ensure they understand both. If you have a 16-year-old child, for example, as well as a 6-year-old, you’ll understand they will have different paces; finding the common ground between them is key to avoid them being at loggerheads. Naturally, the pace of the 6-year-old will determine your group’s overall speed, but this is actually good, as you can spend the extra time savouring the sights and mingling with the locals. You can also take more pictures and make your visit much more memorable – every cloud has a silver lining!

Have a contingency plan

You may believe that you have the most ironclad itinerary in the history of holidays – but adding children to the mix can easily demolish the best-laid plans. While a good family travel insurance policy will protect you from financial problems, do make sure you stay flexible regarding your scheduled travel. Children have needs different from yours and you may unwittingly push them too hard and turn your holiday into a chore rather than a pleasure for them. Take your time, respect the needs of everyone in the group, learn to adjust, and always, always have a back-up plan when things don’t go as pleasantly as planned.

Keep your expectations realistic

One common source of friction between parents and their children when travelling together is the parent’s failure to recognise one simple truth: what children want may be completely different (or even opposite) to what the adults want. At the very least, you, as a parent, must recognise that your children may not see the Eiffel Tower through your eyes – to many it’s just a big metal tower. In fact, however, children may be taken by the smallest of things: a butterfly fluttering across the park in Barcelona, a gelato stall in Sicily, or that old Italian man selling roasted chestnuts. By listening or sensing closely what delights your children-and following through-you’ll lessen the friction and open up the trip to being far more memorable.

Getting good family travel insurance just sets the foundation for a relatively worry-free travel, but that’s only the beginning. Follow these tips and you’ll be well on your way to that Holy Grail – the ideal family holiday.