After what felt like an eternity of being stuck at home (thanks, COVID) travel is officially back on the cards! So now is the perfect opportunity to make up for lost time and enjoy a family holiday. After all, holidays are a great opportunity to spend time with your loved ones and make some of your most cherished memories. A break from everyday life and routines can be a great way to reset as a family.
Keep reading as we round up the top five tips so you can plan a constructive holiday that everyone will enjoy!
A little leg work goes a long way so arrange activities before you go
A little leg work goes a long way , so arrange some activities for your kids before you go on a holiday. This way, they can have some structure to their days and you can avoid confusion about what to do. Plus, having some planned activities will give you some peace of mind knowing that your kids are being productive.
Ask your children what they want to do while on holiday. Arrange an activity every day or every other day. Offer the choice between two different types of constructive activities each day. Take into account if any members of the family have specific needs (for example medical needs or disability). Keep the duration of each activity short but engaging. Limit activities to one hour per day so there’s flexibility in the day to be spontaneous too. Remember not to stress, plan with a smile and make sure you’re having fun too.
Tailor made: Plan activities based on your family’s interests
One way to make sure your kids have a productive holiday is to plan activities based on their interests. This way, they'll be more engaged and excited about what they're doing. If your child likes art, for example, you could visit a museum or go to a pottery class. If they're into sports, sign them up for a camp or if they’re a nature lover, take them bushwalking. You can also help them find a sport that's fun but new to them so they can experience something new.
Helping your children explore different interests in this way can not only keep their attention during the holidays, but it may also spark an interest in something new. Another thing you can do to provide a constructive holiday for your kids is embrace their creativity by getting out their favourite art supplies and exploring their creative flair with them. The last tip is to spend time with them - by doing things together like reading, playing games, watching movies or just talking about how school went this year - it will let them know that they are valued and loved even and give you a chance to connect away from the stress of everyday life.
Think of things to bring with you
What things should you bring with you when planning a constructive holiday for your kids? There are a few things you should keep in mind. First, you'll want to make sure you have plenty of activities planned to keep them busy. You'll need to pack snacks and drinks to keep them fuelled throughout the day. Remember the golden rule with snacks, however much you need, pack more… and then more again! Also make a comprehensive list of everything you should pack, such as sunscreen, first-aid kit, swimmers and hats. Remember to pack clothes that are comfortable and easy to move in. Make sure you snap away lots of photos to capture all the memories. Finally, don't forget to have fun!
Don’t over-schedule yourself
The holidays are a great time to relax and spend time with family, but it’s important not to over-schedule yourself. Trying to do too much can lead to stress and burnout. Plus, your kids will be more likely to enjoy themselves if they have some quality downtime with you.
Don’t let the commercialisation of the holiday overtake the traditions you want to follow: some people want to make Christmas all about shopping, while others want it all about religion. If you choose not to buy gifts for children who don’t celebrate Christmas, then focus on giving them something else that is meaningful to them.
Make sure everyone in the family is included. There are times when one child or parent might be left out of an activity because their preferences differ from those of others in the family. So make sure everyone has something fun planned for them during this time of year.
Make your holiday activities family-friendly. If there are things that are too difficult for you or your children, don’t do them.
Don’t stress if it doesn’t all go to plan
The holidays are a time for family, friends, and fun. But if you’re a parent, it can also be a time of stress. You want your kids to have a good time, but it can also be hard managing a break from your regular routines and rituals. Sure, their nap schedule might not be as organised as when you’re at home but embrace the change to your regular programming.
Getting stressed out will make it harder for you to enjoy yourself over the holiday season so try to keep calm, cool and collected during your escape and don’t forget to get realistic ]
Don’t stress if it doesn’t all go as planned. As we said, there will be times when things won't go as smoothly as planned. If one of your children gets upset or frustrated while you’re away, try not to take it personally.
There are many ways to have fun days with kids while you’re away and make precious memories.
It is best to prepare well in advance before taking any trips. It is also a good idea to keep children entertained during long travel times by listening to their favourite songs, children’s podcasts or playing games like Eye Spy.
Make a list of all the things you need to do and start checking things off as you go. This will help you stay on track and avoid getting overwhelmed. The holidays can be a hectic time for parents, but it’s important to try and stay calm. And remember to have a happy holiday!