Thanks to REI for this great travel advice for families. Use these tips for any last minute travels between now and the start of the school year!
- Plan Together — Encourage your children to be a part of the planning/selection process. Select a few trips that meet your family’s requirements, engage children in learning about each trip, then let them choose the family vacation this year.
- Ask Questions — Once your vacation is selected, ask your children what questions they have about the trip or location.
- Geography Lesson — Use a map/globe to help children learn how far they are going and what the flight route will be, etc. This helps establish an early connection to the destination.
- Research Locations — Search online for small towns your itinerary will pass through – learn about the history, animals plants and people that live in these places. Find something your family wants to learn more about or see while you visit.
- Pack It Up — Pack with your child – use the gear list and have them think about what they already have that fits the need and what they will need to get.
- Keep a Travel Journal — Get your child a journal and help them write in it each day about what happened on their trip – encourage them to draw pictures. Be sure to record the senses you used along the way to hear different sounds, smells, tastes, and sights you experienced in each place.
- Make a Lasting Memory — Make sure your children get to use your camera, or have their own so they can take photos. An instant camera is a fun thing to take along when visiting developing countries. It’s a great gift to share on the spot with new friends you make along the way and a quick way to add photos to the journal when the children recaps their day.
- Send a Postcard Home — Look for postcards to send to family, friends, and even to your own home so your children have a memento from their trip awaiting them upon your return home. Make sure you use colorful local stamps – great keepsakes and addition to journals.
- The More the Merrier — Travel with other families with children. Both families will appreciate the company of other playmates, and adults.
- Present — If your child is in school, have him create a presentation for the class to "show and tell" about his trip.
Do you have any other great tips you would offer based on your vacation experience?