Think back to when you were young, I bet most of your happy memories are about the fun times you had and they probably included holidays.
Although holidays are something we all look forward to there is no doubt they can also be some of the most stressful, challenging times you can have. You have saved all year for this special time for your family to be together. You have spent countless hours perusing holiday destinations and places to stay.
Now you need to make sure that you have the best holiday you can have even if the holiday becomes a bit of a challenge in itself. The thing about holidays is you have a different routine, you are in a different environment and you are probably spending more time than you normally would do with your family.
I know that may sound a little strange, but just think about a family of four with school-age children. How many hours do you spend together each week?
Here are some things to consider before you set off on that long-deserved break.
Get the kids to help with the planning. Include them and have a few family meetings where you can discuss different holiday considerations.
If you have young children how are you going to manage looking after the kids? Is the childcare going to be a joint effort or will you take it in turns?
Are there any special activities or things anyone wants to do or see in your party.
Who is in charge of any chores while you are away? Draw up a list or make a rota if your children are old enough.
All of these things can lead to friction and need to be sorted out before the holiday.
Make sure you all have realistic and shared expectations of the holiday. e.g. Are you going to be eating out every night or cooking for yourselves if you are in self-catering accommodation
Take travel board games, a pack of cards, and colouring pens and paper.
Make sure you are able to eat when you arrive at your destination. And if you are in any doubt, pack some dried or tinned food so you rustle up an emergency meal. We have been caught out like this. Nothing to eat in the villa and no restaurants or shops open close by as our flight arrived later than scheduled. It was not a good start!
Have a wet or bad weather plan of what to do or where to go.
Make sure you all have realistic and shared expectations of the holiday. e.g. Are you going to be eating out every night or cooking for yourselves if you are in self-catering accommodation.
Try to keep your sense of humour and if things get challenging, remember holidays are a time to put first things first – and by that I mean your family.
If you do this before your holiday there is less likely to be friction and everyone will have the same expectations from the holiday.