Posted by Discovery Parks on 20 Jan 2017
Holidays with grandchildren are great bonding experiences filled with wonderful memories. But while travel with children can be the stuff of dreams, if things go wrong, they can also be a living nightmare! This is true no matter whether kids are travelling with their parents, taking a special trip alone with Grandma & Grandpa, or on a journey with the whole gang.
Multigenerational travel with the entire family is more popular than ever, but holidays for grandparents and grandchildren are just as exciting (and likely welcomed by parents, who can finally enjoy a holiday of their own).
We’ve asked around (our favourite grandies) and come up with the best tips for travelling with grandkids - whether you’re travelling alone, with them, or with your children.
If you're healthy and fit, camping is a great way to travel with your grandchildren. Holiday parks are the ideal place to camp with kids because of the range of facilities on offer: playgrounds, pools, camp kitchens and jumping pillows. During February, selected Discovery Parks are offering a variety of activities and packages for both kids and baby boomers who are travelling midweek. From face painting, to free peddle kart hire, to wine tasting and pizza nights, Discovery Parks will keep the grandchildren (and the grandparents) entertained.
Involve the Kids in the Planning Process
The best way to get kids excited for a trip is to involve them in the planning process. Find out what they are interested in doing and seeing on their trip and you’ll be much more likely to have a successful holiday. Just make sure you plan an intinerary everyone can enjoy & don’t run yourself ragged trying to keep up with the kids. Make sure there is scheduled downtime where you and the kids can get some rest and relaxation. For older kids, get them to keep a journal and take photos to show Mum & Dad when they get home.
Take a Warm Up Trip
If you’re taking the grandchildren on a long trip without Mum and Dad for the first time, it might be worth doing a few test trips to discover how you all travel together. Start with short trips to a local museum or restaurant, or have them stay over with you for a night or the weekend.
Keep the Kids Entertained
Remember that kids need some time with their peers and places to let off steam on a holiday. Holiday parks are great because there are bound to be new friends to be made and plenty of kid-friendly facilities to ensure they will use up some energy (and sleep like logs).
Don't forget to bring along any comfort items like stuffed toys or blankets. If you’re travelling alone with the kids, Facetime is a great tool for chatting to Mum and Dad when the kids are starting to feel a bit homesick. Mum & Dad will feel better knowing their kids are in good hands, and you'll feel great listening to the kids rave about the activities you’ve done together.
Give Everyone Space
Make sure everyone has their own space while on holiday together. If you’re travelling in a caravan or camping with older kids, it might be worth letting them have their own tent in close proximity to yours so that they can have some alone time, and ensure you get a break too.
Follow Mum & Dad’s Rules
Getting Mum & Dad on board is key to a successful trip with the grandchildren. While you’re not a stranger to your grandkids, you’re not their parent. Try your best not to permit bad behaviour that would not be allowed at home and everyone will be happier for it.
Consider Your Own Needs
Don't be overly ambitious about how much you can physically handle. Just as young children need their rest, grandparents do, too. Holiday parks often hold kids clubs which will give you a great chance to have a break and relax while the kids play. Remember your happiness is important as well.
Thinking of taking a trip with the kids or the grandkids? Discovery Parks has you covered with selected parks offering activities to suit kids and parents/grandparents. Select a park to find out more on our activities and specials: FIND A PARK