The family – see the resemblance?

Everyone loves a vacation.  As we head to the end of 2020 and start thinking about what 2021 will bring, it’s also time to start thinking about next year’s vacations. And the one trend that has been picking up steam over the years is multigenerational vacations – trips that incorporate the whole family from the grandparents down to the littlest babies and everyone in between. According to the Family Travel Association, 40% of all leisure travel is multigenerational, and that figure is anticipated to increase.

Why multi-generational travel?  Why should you travel with the whole family?

Shared Memories

Time is precious and time is fleeting.  By taking the time out from our daily lives and choosing to spend it with our extended family, we are creating family memories and stories that will be passed down for years.  One of my favorite photos is one we took years ago on a family cruise with my father, children, cousins, aunts, and uncles.  I look at it every day and think about those family members who have grown up, and those who are no longer with us, and just how much fun we had with that quality time on the ship.

New experiences

The world should be shared with people.  The beauty of traveling with loved ones is that you all get to experience new places together. Maybe the grandparents want to go to the Louvre, you want to explore Montmarte and the children want to go on the carousel in the Jardin des Tuileries.  You certainly don’t have to be together 24/7, but visiting these attractions together will bring fresh perspectives.  There is nothing like seeing the same painting through both the grandparent and grandchild’s eyes.

Bonding Time

By traveling with several generations, you have the opportunity to develop family relationships and watch them grow. Our first family vacation was with family from California, Florida, Maryland, and New Jersey.  We rarely saw each other, and the younger cousins barely knew each other.  Now, those younger ones are adults and while still separated by distance, they are thick as thieves. The vacation with the child eventually grows to the vacation with a young adult. Being able to interact with family members on different levels in their lives is priceless.

Cost Savings

When booking a group, there is often a cost-savings to accommodations and attractions (honestly, not so much with air). The more rooms you book, there may be discounts and added amenities and perks such as private check-in, private cocktail parties, comped rooms and more.

Built-in babysitters

Ok, I am only half-joking on that. But having many relatives around means perhaps you and your spouse or partner will be able to get some much-needed alone time while the grandparents watch the kids for a little while. We visited Key West with my parents when my daughter was 11 months old. My parents weren’t into the island nightlife, so they happily watched their only grandchild while my husband and I got to stroll Duval Street for a few hours.

Booking a trip for a large group of people who differ in interests, abilities and ages is difficult, but with a little expectation management and guidelines to maximize everyone’s time happiness, it can be the trip of a lifetime. A good travel advisor will make sure of it.

Stay tuned for next week when we explore the 5 best trips to take on a multi-generational vacation.