Almost every season offers an excuse to travel with the family. Summer is an obvious one, winter means holiday travel, and spring gives us spring break. Spring break lasts for about a week or so and is the perfect opportunity to recharge on vacation, especially for families. During this busy time of year, it can be hard to focus on planning a vacation and we often wait until the last minute to plan our trip. TravelingMom, TravelingDad, and Vacatia conducted a survey and it showed that 28 percent of those surveyed said they will wait until the last minute. Basically, you’re not alone in waiting and there are answers for those looking for some ideas for families or just some spring break planning tips.
If you are heading on a trip for spring break you might need some packing essentials. We never leave home without our favorite luggage, sunscreen, the camera, and comfortable shoes! You will probably need to stay hydrated so make sure you grab a hydroflask for the trip!
The best spring break planning tips you will find include ideas for families, friends, couples and singles to enjoy this time of year.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking a spontaneous trip. In fact, some of the best traveling we’ve done was planned a week or two in advance. Some people may even say that the best trip they’ve taken during any time of year wasn’t planned at all. Still, there are others who would rather have a spring break trip planned well in advance. About 19 percent of people surveyed said they have their plans for spring break finished before the end of the year before. If you fall into the majority and are waiting until the last minute you’ll need some of the best spring break planning tips. From experience and surveys, you’ll have all of the spring break ideas for families and everyone else you’ll need in one place.
Plan in Advance
You’ve just read that most people wait until the last minute to plan their spring break vacation. You’re probably here because it feels too late and is currently the last minute. However, next year, plan in advance. If you’re traveling domestically, try to get it done between three and seven weeks out, internationally, eight to ten months out. The length of time you plan out can directly correlate with how much money you save on flights and hotels. I used to plan further in advance, but honestly, life is so busy now that it just doesn’t always happen that way. I guess what matters most is planning in a way that fits our lifestyle. With our kids in club sports, booking far in advance is not a reality, but if we book a couple of months out we usually have luck with our plans working out as we had hoped. I also go into our plans knowing that our options may be limited if we wait too long, but any vacation is better than no vacation. One of the best ideas for families is to plan in advance if possible.
Travel in Comfort
Work hard, play hard(er). We work hard and manage a lot just as every other parent does so when we go on vacation, we really aren’t interested in bare accommodations. Everyone in our family likes to be comfortable and for us, that means space. We prefer condos and multi-room accommodations so everyone is happy and we can focus on making memories – fun and happy ones – together. We aren’t alone in this feeling of needing a multi-room place to lay our heads. Vacatia says the rise in people wanting more space during their vacation is why they were founded. In fact, accommodations will take up most of the budget for more than half of spring break travelers.
Consider What Makes Everyone Happy
Not all spring break planning tips will be for just you and your family. As a family, we most often prefer to travel with just our core unit. I guess the easiest way to explain why is that it is simply how we recharge. Don’t get me wrong, we love to travel with friends, but our time together is a priority for all of us. And while our children still feel that way, we will take full advantage. However, this year, we are traveling with friends during spring break and are crazy excited for it. Again, we aren’t the only ones who feel the way we do. Over 60 percent of those surveyed said they will bring their kids, grandparents, or other family members. On the other hand, the times are changing and more people will be including friends in on their vacation. Roughly 8 percent said they will bring friends along with their families and another 8 percent said they will only travel with friends. It will be our first boat trip with friends and our first trip to Catalina Island on our boat. The more the merrier!
I take on a lot of the logistics when planning travel for our family simply because my life allows it. That being said, we decide on the big things together and I am the secretary behind making it happen. Moms like me just seem to hold the power with 47 percent of those surveyed said mom does the planning. However, the 11 percent of people who said vacation planning is a “team sport” were right. Planning together gets everyone invested in the travel experience, builds excitement, and best of all – rids me of any potential blame. Our kids are old enough now that they enjoy doing their own things as well which allows my husband and I to enjoy a dinner alone. Making reservations in advance for plans like this is a non-negotiable because waiting til the last minute can mean no one gets what they want.
Plan but Don’t Overplan
I don’t think my husband ever thought he would hear me recommend to not overplan as part of a list of spring break planning tips. I am a planner at heart but the parent in me that is forced to plan so much of our day – each and every day – hates having our vacation too structured. It helps to just keep a budget and plan one or two things to reduce the budget in each category and then wing it from there. While most people will focus on accommodations, other important factors included transportation, activities, and dining ideas for families. The most spontaneous aspect? Meals, less than 10 percent of people plan meals during their vacation. The second most important aspect, after accommodations in the survey, was transportation to their destination. Vacation is about a break from life so while I recommend planning the core essentials, it’s equally important to leave time for impromptu fun.