Life is becoming busier and busier, and families are ever more scattered about the country and even the world than ever before. Grandparents, parents, children, and even grandchildren feel the need to spend quality time with each other. Multigenerational vacations are becoming more and more popular as a way of reconnecting with your loved ones.
From reserving rooms at an all-inclusive resort, booking a dozen cabins on a cruise ship, or booking a sprawling vacation villa, families that want to vacation together need to have a plan in place. If you’ve ever tried to get the family together for a simple family dinner, you’ve probably run into scheduling headaches. Now, magnify that for a weeklong vacation where multiple adults need to clear their schedules, kids need to be free from school and other activities, and flights need to be coordinated.
As you plan your multigenerational vacation, start with assessing availability. Consider school vacations and holidays, work obligations, and other family events such as weddings. Generally speaking, because of the complexity of the vacation, it’s best to plan a year or more advance. Everyone will not be able to give you a definitive “yes” that far out, but if most of the group reaches a consensus, you can move forward and start planning.
Once you know your dates, consider your family members and their particular needs. Are there babies and toddlers in the group? Will you need baby accessories like cribs and high chairs or a quiet place for naps during the day? Is there easy access to a fridge to store food? If the children are school-aged, is the resort/ship/ villa child-friendly? Is there plenty of activities to keep them busy during the day? Then, there are distinctly different needs for teens. Is there enough stimulation and interaction for them also? What about the working adults, Will they need an office space to work during the vacation? Finally, are the older family members in generally good health and mobile? Do they need a destination and lodging that accommodates people using mobility aids like canes, walkers, electric scooters, or wheelchairs? All of these elements will inform the type of destination and accommodations you need to book.
Once you figure out what everyone needs, you can concentrate on their wants. Where does the group want to go? Brainstorm the location or type of trip you want to take; land vs. ship, beach vs. mountain, All-inclusive resort vs. private villa. Again, this is a consensus agreement. There are many places around the globe ideal for a family reunion. You are sure to find something that works for your family.
Finally, please focus on the accommodations themselves. All-inclusive makes for a relaxing vacation with plenty of activities to keep every generation active and occupied. Shared rental houses or villas can be perfect home bases for a multigenerational vacation. You’ll usually have access to multiple bedrooms, communal space for group hangouts, a kitchen, outdoor spaces, and sometimes even a movie room. A cruise, like an all-inclusive, has plenty of activities onboard in addition to the exciting ports that they visit.
No matter what type of vacation you decide on, you will be sure to have a wonderful time reconnecting as a family, forming memories for years to come.