Is It Time for a Family Vacation?

When is it time for a family vacation? How about now?

Photo by CC user rodeime on Flickr

Even though summer seems to go by quicker than any other season, many families make the summertime the time they get away from it all.

Whether you and your family were able to vacation during the summer or not, there is always that next trip to plan for.

That said have you thought about a trip away from home that involves more than just packing the kids and the luggage in the car for a weekend getaway?

For some families, a trip throughout parts of Europe, Africa, South America, Central America or a number of other destinations is not out of the question.

So, is it time for a family vacation?

Planning a Big Going Away Trip

If you and your family are thinking about that trip to one of the earlier mentioned regions of the world, planning will obviously be key.

Whether you are in need of vacation packages to Brazil or elsewhere, remember to keep some of the following factors in mind:


  1. When should we go? – This of course all depends on when you can get everyone together. Kids will typically have off a week or two during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, with a couple of months off for the summertime school break. That break tends to vary around the country. For instance, many schools in the southwest will break from mid-May to late July, while schools in the northeast don’t get out until mid-June, but then are closed until around the week before Labor Day. If you live in a colder region of the U.S., you might find it best to get away in the wintertime, assuming that is that you want to go somewhere warmer for a week or two. If Brazil or another part of South America is on your mind, going during the U.S. winter is ideal, especially since Brazil is celebrating summertime then. Keep in mind that the famed Brazilian Carnival runs for a week each year in February, so you may find airfares and hotels to be on the higher side, yet you should still shop around;

  3. Getting paperwork in order – Given the changes several years ago, Americans traveling outside the country require passports to even visit Canada or Mexico. The same obviously holds true for longer trips such as Great Britain and Europe, Central and South America, Australia etc. If you do not have passports for anyone or everyone in the family, don’t delay getting them. It typically can take up to six weeks or so for all the documentation (including the required photo) to be approved. If you are looking at a trip outside the country during the Christmas holiday, you should already be working on getting passports up to speed, especially as there can be delays as major holidays get closer;

  5. What to eat? – As any mom can tell you, their kids can be some of the pickiest eaters around. That said traveling outside the U.S. can lead to some tough food decisions for the family. Yes, there are typically many American fast-food restaurants in major cities of countries worldwide, but you may want something a little more exciting than a hot dog or hamburger that you can easily get back home. Talk to your kids about some of the food options for your trip, seeing what grabs their attention. The last thing in the world you want is to land somewhere and journey out for your first meal, only to see a child with a sour look on his or her face when the menu comes around;

  7. Staying safe and healthy – Lastly, also make sure you know where to find immediate medical assistance for your kids (and you or your spouse) if necessary. It can be a little daunting when far away from home to find your child is sick or has injured themselves in a fall etc. Unlike all the different medical options typically found back home, that may not be the case when visiting some regions of the world. At minimum, have a first-aid kit with you when you travel, providing the basic items that you might need for minor injuries and sicknesses.


If the time has come for a family vacation, pack yourself up with all the tips you need to make it a trip of a lifetime.