My Family Vacation Survival Tips

Family vacation is something I truly look forward to. Each year I take the kids on a family vacation. I did not get to travel much when I was younger, so this was something I always wanted to do with my kids. A few years ago I was able to sign up for the Marriott Destination Points program; and we’ve been taking an annual family vacation ever since.

This year, I wanted to expand our family vacation to include my grandparents, mom, aunt, and sister. So, there are nine of us traveling in total; staying at the Marriott Surfwatch resort. As with all Marriott resorts, the room is great, there are a plethora of activities for the adults and kids; and we are in an Oceanside villa so the beach is right outside.

I started planning for this big family vacation over a year ago. When I saw that Marriott had a few resorts in Hilton Head, South Carolina I thought that would be a great place to go since the oldies (this is my nickname for my grandparents, mom, and aunt — they are 83, 61, & 57; don’t judge me) don’t like to fly. I knew the trip would be interesting, since I would have my three kids in tow; and the drive to Hilton Head, from Washington DC, is about 10 hours.

Hilton Head

Our first visit to Hilton Head has been a great one.

From day one…no, actually from day zero, I knew I would have to employ some mind tricks (on myself) if I were actually going to survive this week. What I discovered while psyching myself out was that I can actually enjoy the trip…like for real…with all my marbles in-tact. Want to know how? Keep reading and I will share with you my family vacation survival tips.

It’s NOT about me. What? Of course it is. Everything is. So the family vacation must be too, right? Umm, No. When on vacation with the family it is not about me. My girls’ only trip in October, so totally about me. But the family vacation, not so much. It is about the kids, my extended family, and their enjoyment. In the process of making sure they had a great time, and not putting my needs anywhere near the top of the list, I ended up happy too. How neat is that?

I am NOT in control. Whoa there potty mouth, what did you say? I am the control master! So hard it was (lol…yoda) to give up control this week. But I did it. I did not try to plan every minute, I did not try to dictate every little movement, and I let the kids be kids. I was free. I did not have to worry about anything or be the one with all the answers; or be the only one with a room key. It was great.

I had NO expectations. Sort of similar to it not being about me and me not being in control but taking it a step further; I had absolutely no expectations for this trip. Not a one. I had no personal agenda, no plans, no must-see-must-do lists. Nada. Nothing. Zilch. My one and only objective was for my kids, grandparents, aunt, mom, and sister to have a great time. To see the ocean, relax, and enjoy life. Mission accomplished.

family vacation beach

Family vacation at the beach…it doesn’t get much better than this.

I want to hear from you!

Do you have any family vacation survival tips to share? Please leave me a comment below and let’s have a discussion.

Comments 8

  1. A tip I always remember to do is make sure to bring along enough snacks. Hunger makes everyone grumpy.

  2. My number one tip for Family Vacation survival: Chances are, there’s a dollar store located wherever you go ( off on a side street where the dumb tourists don’t bother to find): Dollar Tree, Yankee dollar or All For a Dollar…..there you will find the usual trinkets that normally sell for $5-$15 (or more) at the Tourist-trap gift shops.

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