Why Travel is so Important for Families, Especially Kids

Just about everyone has an indelible memory of a family vacation. Maybe it was a surprise trip to Europe, or maybe it was just a pile-in-the-car trek out to Mount Rushmore. Wherever we go and whatever we do, family travel makes memories that will last a lifetime.

Turns out, we also do a lot more than that.

There’s an increasing body of research that’s uncovering why it’s so important to go on family vacations – especially for kids.

One of the great things about travel insurance for family travel is that family members can be covered under one plan (up to 10 people living in the same state), making it easy to help protect your family vacation, and all those memories.

Also read: 7 Questions to Ask to Find the Best Family Travel Insurance

Travel is great for kids

While we may clutch at our throats a little when we think of taking kids on ambitious vacations, here are just some of the ways travel is beneficial for kids, according to Minds of Wonder:

  • Travel helps kids become more adaptable and flexible
  • Travel teaches kids that we may look different, but we are all the same
  • Travel encourages and teaches responsibility
  • Travel ignites kids’ senses of curiosity, imagination and adventure
  • Travel encourages appropriate risk-taking
  • Travel enables kids to try something new

Those are some pretty amazing benefits of travel – and it doesn’t have to be super-ambitious travel for kids to learn responsibility or have their sense of adventure stoked. A simple weekend trip can do wonders.

Also read: The Best National Parks For Family Vacations

When you take that much-needed family vacation there are some key things the adults can do to make the trip all the better. These tips from writer Lisa Bellavin can help maximize its impact for the kids who come along:

Be the prepared and organized one: You may be an impetuous, la-de-da type by nature, but on a big vacation you need to be prepared and organized so your kids can enjoy the trip with a minimum of fuss and stress. Remember, your kids aren’t the only ones who might be stepping out of their comfort zone on vacation.

Also read: 5 Tips for Planning a Smooth Family Trip

Anticipate jet lag and schedule appropriately: If you’re flying to a different time zone with kids, understand that they’re going to be jet-lagged, tired and cranky that first day. As a result, keep the first day’s activities light and schedule some nap time for all.

Build excitement with apps, books and videos: Make sure your kids know how much fun this is going to be by sharing books and videos about their destinations. After all, what child wouldn’t love a trip to France after they read Madeline?

Pack smart for day trips, with water, snacks, a hat, sunscreen, and some portable entertainment: You may be the resolute hiker, but kids burn through fuel at a staggering rate. Make sure they’re taken care of and everything will go that much more smoothly.

Teach kids simple words and phrases in the local language, and encourage them to use them: Nothing melts the heart of a local – and breaks the ice – like a child doing their best to communicate in a foreign language. Duolingo is a great learning tool for all ages. Don’t be too surprised when your kids learn the language faster than you!

Also read: 6 Tips to Talk Like a Local on Vacation

Visit areas where your children can play and socialize with other kids: A little playground time is always a good idea. There’s no better place for kids to learn that we’re more alike than different.

Give them local currency and encourage them to use it: Similarly, nothing reinforces differences and similarities quite like spending money. And it’s guaranteed that kids will love the colorful currency of foreign countries!

Actually, travel is great for everyone in the family

It’s not just the kids who benefit from travel. When we travel as a family, we all benefit.

Consider the plethora of ways that travel is simply better with kids, from the blog Full Suitcase:

  • You travel slower and see more
  • You make the most of your day
  • You meet new people
  • You get all kinds of privileges
  • Fun activities that you may otherwise be “too old for”
  • Sometimes kids can even travel free
  • More space – Kids are a great excuse for some extra space to stretch out, whether it’s a car or hotel.
  • No time to get bored
  • Quality time and shared memories
  • You can relax – the kids are with you

Also red: 6 Tips For Choosing a Great Vacation Rental For Your Next Family Trip

More space, maybe you get to skip a line or two, slower travel – it’s all good.

The window for family travel is actually pretty small. You owe it to the kids in your life – and to you and your partner as well – to maximize it.

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