Holiday checklist for families

The most successful holidays with children start well before you leave home. Think carefully about your destination, the age and stage of your kids, and their special interests as well as your own. And do like the boy scouts: be prepared.

Here’s our handy holiday checklist to get you started.

  1. Whose holiday is it anyway?

A family trip is not just about the kids, it’s about the whole family. Think about what will work for both parents and kids.

  1. Right place, wrong time

Is it the right time of year to travel to the destination you’ve chosen? Bad weather can wreak havoc with the best laid travel plans, and monsoon rains or scorching summer temperatures can be unpleasant.

  1. Be informed

Do your research before you travel. If you haven’t got time to research, talk to your travel agent or speak to us.

  1. Hotel or apartment?

Apartments are usually more affordable than hotels when there are several children involved. Depending on where you’re travelling, connecting hotel rooms are often tricky to find. Having kitchen facilities can save a lot of money.

  1. Don’t get sick

Consult your GP or a specialist travel doctor and make sure you have the necessary vaccinations. Understand the health risks – can you drink the water? – and make sure the children understand them too.   See Travel Health for more information.

  1. Do stuff that kids remember

Find a guide who will entertain and inform; kids retain facts and learn more that way. Do a scavenger hunt or follow a kids’ activity trail in a museum. Find hands-on activities that will teach them about the destination.

  1. Choose activity-based trips carefully

If a trip or tour involves something physical – walking or cycling for example – but is not recommended for kids under 12, then don’t expect your nine year old to do it.