Picking the Perfect Family Vacation Package: Your Essential Guide
by Dana Meltzer Zepeda
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Sometimes you just need to get away from it all, but planning the perfect family vacation can feel like a daunting feat. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place to have all of your questions answered about how to book the best family vacation package, regardless of whether you’re fantasizing about an overwater bungalow in the Caribbean or a rustic lodge at the Grand Canyon.
Here are our top 10 picks, from budget to luxury travel, for family vacations that bundle hotels, car rentals and flights together to give you the most bang for your buck. Read on for all of the details on how to score the ultimate family vacation package without breaking the bank.
Best Disney Work Family Vacation Package: Best Western Lake Buena Vista
Best Affordable Family Vacation Package: Circus Circus Hotel, Las Vegas
Best Hawaiian Family Vacation: Aulani Disney Resort & Spa
Best All-Inclusive Family Vacation Package: Beaches Turks & Caicos
Best Bahamas Family Vacation Package: The Atlantis, Paradise Island
Best Caribbean Family Vacation Package: Circus-Themed Pool At Club Med Punta Cana
Best European Family Vacation Package: Park Plaza County Hall London
Best United States Vacation Package: Embassy Suites By Hilton Washington D.C. Georgetown
Best Affordable Vacation Package: Marriott’s Willow Ridge Lodge, Branson, Missouri
Best Adventure Vacation Package: Grand Canyon Railway Hotel
Best Costa Rica Vacation Package: The Springs Resort And Spa At Arenal
What to Consider When Booking a Vacation Package
Planning the perfect family vacation is undeniably exciting, but booking a trip can also be a nerve-racking process. So do yourself a favor and consider these things first:
What does your family hope to gain from your trip?
Do your kids prefer surfing or skiing? Mountains or islands? Given the choice, would they rather stay Stateside or travel abroad? These are all important questions to ask yourself — and your children — before you ever even sit down to start researching your options.
What are your family’s likes and dislikes?
If you have a child with food allergies, you may want to consider booking a vacation rental with a kitchen instead of staying at a hotel where you’ll have to eat out for every single meal. Are your kids art history buffs? In that case, a big city filled with museums may be the best place for you. If not, maybe a beach vacation or ski lodge is more your speed.
Are your passports up to date?
If you’re traveling abroad, be sure your passports are valid. Check out services like RushMyPassport.com (www.rushmypassport.com) to save yourself the hassle of standing in line all day trying to score a last-minute appointment if you’ve already missed the deadline to renew by mail. Trust us, if you’re in this predicament, it’s well worth spending a few extra dollars to get yourself out of it.
When are you traveling?
Decide whether you have enough flexibility in your schedule to travel during the “off” season. If your kids are still babies or toddlers, the answer is probably yes. So do yourself (and your wallet!) a favor by booking a family vacation package to the Bahamas in October rather than December. You’ll still enjoy great weather without the hefty price tags that usually accompany school breaks like Christmas and summer vacation.
What is your budget?
Last, but not least, sit down with your spouse or partner to decide whether this trip will be a splurge or steal. If it’s the latter, set a realistic budget and stick to it! Spending what you can afford will help everyone relax and enjoy your trip without worrying about money. Remember, there are just as many affordable family vacations as there are luxury ones, so rest assured you’ll find something perfect soon.
Now, that you’ve narrowed things down, are you ready to start planning? Here are the best family vacation packages available from Hawaii to the Caribbean to Europe and everywhere in between. Safe travels!
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