5 ways to maximize family bonding time (and minimize stress) on your next vacation

Traveling with your family can sometimes feel stressful, and not like the relaxing getaway that it should be. According to recent Vrbo brand research*, 69% of travelers worry when planning a group vacation, and 67% have argued with a travel companion as a result of stress caused by planning a family trip. Coordinating travel dates and flights, packing for the family, and searching for accommodation and activities that suit everyone can sound like a logistical nightmare to many.

Thankfully, it doesn’t need to be that way! Follow these five tips to get the best family bonding vacation, with minimal frustration and maximum fun.

*Mintel, “Travel Booking - Global”, May 2016 Comscore, “American Travelers Path to Purchase”, April 2016

1. Bond while planning by giving every family member a role

Foodie, explorer, comfort-seeker – encourage each member to take on one aspect of the vacation based on their interests. You’ll be surprised at how quickly an itinerary can be put together when everyone gets involved! Even the little ones can take responsibility – mini luggage packers anyone?

2. Involve everyone when deciding where to stay

Choosing accommodation that suits everyone can be challenging. Everyone’s must-haves are often different, such as preferred locations, the importance of separate bedrooms, affordability, and special amenities like a pool or barbeque. Vrbo offers filters for booking options, safety and accessibility features, amenities, and property types that make choosing a home that much easier. 

Tip: With the Trip Boards tool, you can invite your family members to leave comments, like, and vote for their preferred properties in anticipation of your dream family vacation.

3. Allow for family bonding time by relaxing the schedule

After a busy day checking out the sights and sounds of the destination you’re visiting, it’s also important to factor downtime into the itinerary. Having dedicated family time to rest and relax together does wonders in helping the family bond more. Look for the right accommodation that will grant you relaxing amenities- like a private pool or hot tub- as well as communal spaces for a game of charades or completing a jigsaw puzzle.

4. Enjoy quality time by cooking a meal as a family

Enjoy the comforts of a home-cooked meal made with local produce by booking a vacation home that comes with a fully-equipped kitchen. Have fun shopping for groceries at the local supermarket, before whipping up a yummy feast with everyone’s help. Allocate roles for everyone including the little ones, who will enjoy helping out. After all, a family that cooks together, stays together! 

5. Capture the memories with fun family vacation photos

One simple thing that many families forget is to take plenty of pictures and videos to document their vacations! Appoint the most “wefie”-savvy family member as the main photographer, and capture the good, bad, and funny moments. You will appreciate it when you look back years down the road at these cherished memories together.

Written by Charlene Tan, PR manager at Vrbo