Tips on pleasing everyone — of all ages — participating in your family vacation, and keeping them safe and healthy, too.
Look around popular resorts these days and you’re likely to spot a trend: more and more seniors are taking grandchildren on vacation, and many people are sharing vacations with their kids and their parents. You may find three or four generations sitting together in the hotel dining room.
The most important aspect of intergenerational vacation is not so much your destination, but organizing your plans to allow each age group to spend time with their peers. For example, teenagers might go in-line skating or on a supervised bike trip with their peers, while grandma settles in with a good book by the hotel pool. Younger kids might participate in a learn-to-swim program while Mom and Dad get in a round of golf. Then everyone meets for dinner.
Allowing each person their own fun time heads off potential conflicts and insures everyone enjoys themselves. Plus, safe and supervised activities for the youngsters ensure your peace of mind. Many resorts now offer babysitting services and have on-site or medical services nearby, an important consideration for people with chronic conditions such as asthma or angina.
Wherever you choose to go, don’t leave home without separate toilet kits for everyone, containing an adequate supply of all prescription medicines, including things like asthma inhalers and glucose testing kits, first-aid items such as Band-Aids, anti-itch creams, insect repellant, and antihistamines in case of a mild allergic reaction to exotic foods or an insect bite. (If a family member is highly allergic to things like shellfish or bee sting, be sure to get a supply of Epi-Pens or similar injectable epinephrine from your physician.)
Don’t forget a spare pair of reading glasses for menus and bedtime stories. ALL of you need sunglasses and sunscreen, as well as other sun-protective gear like wide-brimmed hats. And, pack a deck of cards or Travel Scrabble for rainy days.
Keep in mind that while your kids and grandkids like being with you, they also want to go off and just be, well, kids—just as you crave adult conversation after hours of playing “Go Fish.”
So be careful to pick a vacation site that everyone can agree on, which provides separate fun for each generation (with qualified supervision for kids), and you’ll be making some travel memories everyone will treasure.
This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question, and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.