You’re best friends. You celebrate everything together, from birthdays to just getting through the week. You’ve shared a lot, including heartache, frustration, sorrow, and happiness. And then you decide to go on vacation together. You spend a week living together under the same roof, sharing expenses, washing up duties, and mealtimes.
Is it a holiday from hell or the trip of a lifetime? Regardless of how strong your friendship is, going on vacation with another family can wreak havoc on your relationship. However, with a few simple rules and a bit of forward planning, there’s no reason why this can’t be a dream vacation.
After all, these types of vacations not only provide the kids with entertainment (other kids) but you adults can share some fun times too. And, if you’re really lucky, each set of parents can share babysitting duties while the others enjoy a romantic night out!
So, here’s how to plan a vacation with another family:
Make Sure You’re Compatible
Firstly, it’s important that your family is compatible with the family you’re going on vacation with. Are your children around the same age? Do you get on with each other enough to spend a lot of time together? Do you all have similar interests?
For example, if one family’s idea of a great vacation is staying in a luxury hotel like Falls Church Marriott and the other wants to pitch up a tent somewhere, it maybe isn’t going to work.
Discuss Things in Advance
Before you go on the trip, it’s important you’ve met up to discuss things thoroughly. Communication is at the heart of any successful vacation, which is why you need to speak to each other during the planning stage rather than jumping to any conclusions.
The more you can discuss beforehand, the less chance there’ll be any arguments on vacation. Even if one of you is doing most of the organizing, it’s important to make sure everyone’s 100% happy with the plans before anything’s finalized.
And one of the most important things you’ll need to agree on is the budget for your vacation. Make sure everyone’s comfortable with how much things are going to cost, establishing how expenses will be paid for in advance. For example, if you’ve got one child and they’ve got two, will you split the house rental 50:50 or will the other family pay more for the extra room they need? You should also discuss how you’re going to pay for meals and activities, too.
Plan Time Apart
Just because you’re all going on vacation together, it doesn’t mean you have to spend every waking hour with each other. In fact, you’re more likely to get on better if you spend some time apart. Equally, not everyone will want to do the same activities as everyone else. So make sure it’s easy for people to get away from everyone else. This could be having a separate space or organizing different activities for one of the days you’re away.
When you’re going on vacation with another family, flexibility is imperative. Be prepared to compromise on some of the things you normally do (e.g. the food you eat and the activities you try), and adapt the kids’ bedtimes so they’re all going to bed at the same time. Then, put your feet up, relax, and enjoy!