As grandparents, you’ll look forward to seeing your grandchildren more than anything else and you want to cherish the time you have with them. One way to do this is to go away on holiday with them, whether in the UK or abroad. Here are five tips that may help you plan your holiday with your grandchildren.
- Get the kids involved
Depending on the age of your grandchildren, why don’t you get them involved as well? Don’t forget to explain where you are going, how you are getting there and where they will be staying. If they know how to use the internet, why not ask them to research the surrounding area to see if they would like to visit some local attractions, such as zoos, waterparks or historical sites?
- Documents and travelling with grandchildren
If you’re only travelling around the UK, you may not necessarily need any documents. However, it’s better to be safe than sorry! One document would be a letter of permission [http://grandparents.about.com/od/tripsovernightlonger/f/Do-I-Need-A-Letter-Of-Permission-To-Travel-With-Grandchildren.htm] signed by both parents with their contact details and permission to give medical care. A letter would be highly recommended if you are taking the children abroad. To make extra sure that your letter is accepted, have the letter signed by a person in authority, for example, the child’s teacher, a police officer or your local MP. When leaving these shores, your grandchildren should, of course, each have their own passport and any required travel insurance, so don’t leave home without double checking you have these.
- Choosing your ideal holiday
You will need to consider the ages of the children, any special needs, the number of people and if you are travelling abroad or having a “staycation.” Here are some things to bear in mind:
- If you have young grandchildren, then going to somewhere that would need immunisations would be too much for them.
- If you have a fussy eater, a self-catering holiday may be better than an all-inclusive one.
- If your destination needs a visa, make sure you have enough local money on you to pay for it.
- Always put your grandchildren first!
- Don’t over-do it
It’s always tempting to arrange something to do every day, but don’t! Allow everyone to have some space, especially when it comes to sleeping arrangements. Look at convertible sofas or adjoining rooms. If you are on a ‘self-catering’ holiday, perhaps give them a task such as choosing and preparing the evening meal one or two nights of the week. Teens like their sleep especially if they have just finished their exams – why not allow them to sleep in? Remember, if you have younger children, staying by the swimming pool all day is not suitable. They will get bored and become boisterous. Look for something else to keep them entertained. If you’re staying in a hotel, make sure it has organised games and a play area. For teenagers, look into what activities are run. For example, the resort may have volleyball, tennis courts or various water activities.
- Rainy days
Make sure that you’re not in the middle of nowhere with nothing to do on a rainy day. Pick a location that ensures the grandchildren still have something to do if it rains when you’re away. Check to see if there is a kids’ club available at your resort and introduce the children to it. For older children, have a look and see if the resort has activities for them to do. For example, they can learn to play card games such as rummy, poker and hearts. You can encourage them to write a story, poem or even a song. If the resort has an indoor pool, the grandchildren may still be able to go swimming or have fun on the slides.
A family holiday with the grandchildren can provide treasured memories, but it’s best to plan ahead to avoid any issues. Follow the tips above and everyone should enjoy their break.