Jan 21st
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Travel Mates

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Travel Mates
...what you should consider!

    My son and I are the best of travel mates.  We are two peas in a pod when it comes to our quest for adventure--trekking jungles, kayaking oceans, exploring ancient civilizations, trying unusual foods, eagerly making new friends.
    On several occasions we have also enjoyed venturing off with other families.
    Here are a few ideas, observations and first hand experiences to consider before taking off for the high roads, even the low roads with new travel mates.

• Joining with other families or taking the kids and their friends on day outings are usually great fun and need minimal preparation.

• Overnight trips and longer stays require forethought, compatibility, and definitely... more planning.
• The ideal situation for the overnight and longer vacations are with friends and family you’ve already vacationed with.  You’re comfortable with each other, know what is expected, and the kids are familiar with the set up.

• A good compatibility test for your child and his or her friend is a sleepover at home.   

• In choosing new travel companions, discuss together (kids included) what kind of travelers you are:  
    How about a condo with home cooked meals?  Does the idea of sleeping in a tent repulse you? Is a hotel with maid and room service a better idea?    
    Are you budget minded or, hey... you’re on vacation so spend, spend, spend?  
    Are your belongings neatly put away, bed cleared for a comfortable night’s sleep or do you spend half the morning looking for that misplaced fin?  
    Are you comfortable with the tried and true or figure... putting another notch in your belt is what life is all about?   
    Do you stay up late at night, then sleep into the morning or are you early to bed and up with the birds?  
    Are you punctual--meeting schedules with ease or find it nothing to figure alternate transportation once you’ve missed your flight?  
    Do you live to be buried chin deep in the sand by your 5 and 7 years olds or do “kid’s clubs” give you the solitude you long for once in awhile?  
    What is your philosophy on child raising and what are the specific rules your children follow, like bed times, allowed snacks, amount of monies spent on and by the kids, along with the appropriate manners and behavior expected.  
    What are your favorite vacation activities--hiking, swimming, book reading, sleeping?  
    Do you have similar likes in food; are you vegetarian or have a special diet?  
    What kinds of entertainment do you enjoy?
    Are there any needs, like handicaps, allergies or insulin dependency that require special handling?  
    What do you expect to get from this vacation?  

• How about it.... is there enough compatibility between everyone to plan a vacation together?   You don’t have to be the perfect matches but it’s a good idea to first decide what you can live with and what you cannot!

• When planning sleeping arrangements, consider sleep habits and kid’s bed times, (it’s hard to be the first to bed while on vacation, but continue routines of reading books, playing a game or joining them in slumber time).

• Share in the cooking, cleaning up, and driving the car.
• Parents babysit your own children, unless a swap of one night is mutually decided.
• Plan the next day’s activities the night before with everyone suggesting a favorite.

• Handle all finances for the trip (flight, hotel, rental car, etc) before you leave your house on vacation.  Split gasoline costs.  Take care of your own meal costs and half of the tip as well as telephone charges, gear rental, lessons, and all other costs incurred by your family.  If you start covering costs with the idea that you’ll be paid back later, despite good intentions, this usually gets out of hand, debts are forgotten, and all can end in frustration and disappointment.
• And the best tip... Plan activities and outings with just your family--spend time apart!  This gives everyone a break, time alone with your own family, and new adventures to share once reunited.
• Above all... be flexible.  There are no bad experiences when it comes to travel... just memorable adventures!


Where are Tricia and Marla?

Tricia and Marla climbed these steps to this magnificent temple. Where are Tricia and Marla?
Click here to find out. 

Tips, Tricks & Tactics

Rewards & Opportunities
Traveling with our Children

"I’ve been traveling with my son since he was 13 weeks old and I love it!  Actually, I discovered that traveling with my child was easy for I was already committed to including him.  I find it a challenge to plan ahead and anticipate his needs... and well rewarded with fun, family adventures." -- Publisher/Editor Deb Cornick 

    So, what do we parents who travel with our children know that others don’t?


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