Planning a Family Vacation

Looking for a welcome escape from the winter doldrums? Plan a vacation together with your family. Even if you don't intend to go anywhere this year, or if your vacation isn't due until next December, take the time now to begin thinking about your next family get-away. Planning a vacation is one of the best ways to have fun together as a family, learn more about the world around you, and at the same time get the most from your vacation. The fun is in the planning. Try it and see.

The first thing that you need to do, is to be clear with your children as to whether you will be planning a real vacation or a fantasy trip. Children can believe it's a fantasy and then at a later time be told that the trip they're planning is real.

The next step is to sit down with your children and decide on some possible location choices. If this is for a real vacation, time and budget restrictions will be factors. For a fantasy vacation, anything goes.

After deciding "where", you can discuss travel options. Are you travelling by car? If you belong to a travel club, your children can write letters, asking for a route map as well as possible tips and suggestions. Traveling by train, bus or plane? You or your child can dial directory assistance at 1-800-555-1212 and request the toll free numbers for Amtrak, Greyhound, or any of the airlines that might serve your area. It's a good idea to rehearse the conversation with your children first, and then allow them to make the call. They will need to be taught the correct way to ask for a listing and they need to have a pencil and paper handy to write down the number. Successfully done, this can be a tremendous confidence builder.

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