Apart from talking about the weather, us Brits love to share holiday plans with anyone who’ll care to listen. But once you’re all booked, the whole family is excited and your hairdresser is suitably informed, have you really covered all the bases? Here are five travel tips for your next holiday to make sure your time in the sun is fabulous from start to finish.
Life’s busy – go all-inclusive
Are you looking forward to a week or two of relaxation? No work, no cooking? Then the best way to make the most of your time off is an all-inclusive holiday. Imagine your meals, snacks and drinks being on hand throughout the day without lifting a finger. All-inclusive holidays also arrange entertainment for grown-ups and kids, so you don’t even have to worry about keeping everyone happy. You can put your feet up, lie back on a sun lounger and let someone else do all the work. Here’s some more information on all-inclusive holidays.
If the kids are happy, you’re happy
Family holidays are the ideal opportunity for spending quality time together. But with tired parents, kids of different ages, foreign food and extra expense wherever you look, it can prove tricky. All-inclusive holidays help to overcome most of these problems. Kids’ clubs provide activities for different age groups, poolside games keep everyone busy during the day, and there may be snorkelling and kayaking if you’re on the beach. And after dinner, family entertainment is provided for you, without having to leave the hotel.
If you fancy travelling to an exotic destination but have children with a limited palate, buffet-style restaurants at all-inclusive hotels are a great solution. Foodies can try local delicacies, while youngsters stick to their tried and tested favourites.
Be prepared: read-up about the area
Many popular holiday resorts are also blessed with incredible natural wonders, rich history or amazing tourist attractions. A dreamy way of passing the winter months or time during your commute to work is reading up about your chosen destination in a travel guide. You can learn more about the highlights and what to expect before you get there. Become an expert in the must-see sights and be prepared for any cultural norms which are different to life at home. Many Mediterranean resorts, for example, boast fabulous walking and adventure opportunities, which would be tricky without a pair of good boots or trainers. And some historic sites or Middle-Eastern cultures require arms and legs to be covered by long sleeves and trousers.
Plan and pack sooner, rather than later
Start writing your lists, gathering flip-flops and trying on sun hats as early as possible so you can remind yourself where everything is and how many T-shirts the kids have outgrown. It can cheer up a wet weekend and give you lots of time for holiday shopping, hopefully before the summer is in full swing, and shorts and sandals are full price. Pack light, too, especially if you have a multiple-leg journey, or you’ll end up carrying the children as well as your bags! And double- and triple-check tickets and timings. Do you have everything you need for a smooth journey, including enough currency for the first few days?
Documents, insurance and mobile phones
Dig out your passports in plenty of time and make sure they will be valid on your return date, ideally with six months to spare. Think about travel visas, insurance, health cover and vaccinations. And if you’re travelling to a country where unrest or disruptive weather events can occur, The Foreign Office offers up-to-date advice for British holidaymakers. Also, think digital. If one of your most-prized possessions is a mobile phone, work out how to avoid roaming charges and big bills before you set off. Call your network provider and tell them about your travel plans. There are lots of options and online advice available for using your phone on holiday, such as how to access local networks and Wi-Fi or buy a SIM card when you’re there.
Whether you’ve decided to travel independently, take the family off the beaten track or treat yourself to an all-inclusive break, these travel tips help solve holiday problems before you even leave home. Although they can’t go so far as guaranteeing sunshine, they do ensure that your long-awaited holiday is as straightforward and fabulous as possible!