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Family Travel Files Ezine Family Vacations Resource
School Rules: Advice for Vacations with Children Six through 12 years of Age. School Rules TravelPhase spans the best years for combining family togetherness with memory making experiences. It is time to do “cool stuff” together. Our suggestions include beach vacations, camping resorts, river rafting adventures, family camps, mountaintop escapes, theme parks excursions, and urban adventures.
Certain things are common to planning family vacation whether you are renting a beach house, arranging a golf vacation for your family, packing for Europe or planning to go camping or snow skiing together. I have assembled a short list to fit the needs of the School Rules TravelPhase with ways to anticipate and lessen family vacation stress.
1. Pack less. Traveling with a backpack and a toothbrush is not a bad idea. If that sounds too drastic still consider downsizing the amount of “stuff” that gets packed. The more that goes along the more variables for stress and the more items that may get lost or left along the way. The thing to remember and to explain to your school age children, vacations mean freedom. Vacations are typically short timeframes and to have a terrific vacation it is not essential to recreate your child’s home away from home.Child'sPplay on Lake Lucern, Switzerland

2. Forget new clothes or new shoes. Resist last minute shopping for clothes or shoes. New things are inevitably less comfortable than old things and the breaking in time should not have to happen on a vacation. Clothing stress can move to vacation stress quickly when kids (or companions) become tired or lines become long, or both.

3. Encourage personal entertainment. Make your kids in charge of their own entertainment while in transit. To make it easy provide them with the tools necessary to keep their stuff contained and useable. Mind Ware is a terrific source for markers, paper and stickers. Books or assorted electrical devices along with extra batteries will solve the rest of the challenge.

4. Pack a surprise. Even though the kids are supposed to be in charge of their own entertainment have a fall back plan. Just in case the plane is delayed or a child becomes ill along the way pack a couple of vacation surprises well suited to alleviating boredom.Music for Little People on Vacation I like the products from Boom Kids audio books, Music for Little People, and Blue & Orange Games because they all also meet the boredom challenge. 

5. Do less and enjoy it more. It is important to allow for free time with freedom from schedules and organized fun. One of the biggest challenges for vacationing families is learning to do less and enjoy it more. Sometimes family vacations become over scheduled creating a self-induced time crunch and often parents return to work feeling just like they need a vacation even though they may have intended to relax, catch up on sleep, and free time with the kids.
Content posted by Nancy Nelson-Duac, Curator of the Good Stuff for the Family Travel Files with images from Family Travel Files. Copyright updated 2018.

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