Multi-generational Family Holidays and Breaks: a How To Guide
According to recent research, almost one in five Brits has been on a ‘3G’ trip (one involving at least three generations) in the past year – sometimes to save on costs, but often simply because it’s a great way for grandparents and grandkids to spend more time with one another, and for parents to get a bit of time off.
Luxury Family Hotels are a popular choice for multi-generational breaks and especially for celebrating special occasions such as big birthdays. They’re also a great meeting point for family members who don’t see one another as much as they’d like because they live some distance apart, and because the hotels are all in the UK they are easy for everyone to get to, without the hassle of airports, flying and transfers.
As experts in the field, we’ve shared our tips for making the most of your extended-family break.
• Where to Stay: You don’t want to be cooped up together 24/7, so choose somewhere with plenty of space and facilities for everyone to do their own thing, whatever that is – a garden, a pool, a spa, and activities for kids ranging from supervised childcare to board games and bikes are some of the things you might like to look out for.
Bear in mind that self-catering isn’t always the best choice because you’ll invariably need to devise a shopping, cooking and cleaning rota that will impinge on quality family time. If it’s special occasion, it’s nice to be looked after by someone else for a change!
• Planning Ahead: Think ahead in terms of who does what, so that everybody’s expectations are met and nobody feels short-changed. Mum and Dad want a romantic meal together? - make sure Grandma and Grandad are happy to babysit one night, and set a date, or book a babysitter via your hotel. Similarly, make sure grandparents feel that they can go off and do their own thing if they want to.
• Days Out: If you all go out together, don’t try to pack too much into one day – don’t forget that older people may not be used to the hectic pace of life with young children and might get tired more easily.
• Setting Boundaries: While it’s good to relax and let in some slack while away, make sure older relatives know if you need to get the kids fed early and to bed by a certain time – keeping little ones up for the sake of social gatherings can result in cranky kids and a break that’s memorable for all the wrong reasons. Hotels with baby-listening mean you can go back and join in with relatives after putting the children to bed.
Similarly, make sure early-waking kids know not to go banging on Grandma and Grandad’s door at the crack of dawn!
• Finances: Save any misunderstandings by being clear in advance who is paying for the accommodation, the meals, the drinks and any activities.
Read more about celebrations for small and large groups at Luxury Family Hotels.