During the summertime, it can be a tradition for many families to go on a vacation as a group for an extended period of time. These trips have the potential to create positive life-lasting memories and bonding opportunities between couples, parents and their children, between siblings and even can include extended family members. However, during these trips with our loved ones, they also hold the potential for difficult moments between family members and disastrous events.

While not every situation can be avoided, there are steps you can take to improve your family vacation for the better. These things can be managed by thoughtful planning and helping set realistic expectations for each family member.


*Make the time traveling to the destination part of the adventure:

Most trips include some waiting, which can lead to feelings of frustration. These time setbacks can be helped by bringing toys, books, or games for all age groups. This can make the time go by faster and make the time spent valuable and fun.


*Plan activities that each person joining the vacation enjoys:

Planning things to do as a group will ensure that each family member’s interests have been considered and that they will feel more included in the group vacation. As parents, you could set up a pre-trip discussion, which gives each member a chance to share their ideas and work on compromising before the vacation begins.


*Prepare for unexpected moments:

In the moment, unexpected events can seem like the whole trip may be ruined and they can feel disastrous to everyone. However, you can help by setting the expectation that life happens when making plans that these stories can later be your favorite memories from the whole vacation that you now have as a shared group experience.


*Consider including alone time for family members or plan team-like activities:

Sometimes a vacation is filled with non-stop action and activities without a chance to pause and appreciate the experience. Being aware that some members may appreciate some reflection time to recharge can prevent burnout from too much togetherness. For those who don’t need alone time, this can be an opportunity to group up certain loved ones together to connect while doing an activity that not everyone else may be interested in.