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I am so excited to have another guest author today – Divya from Eat, Teach, Blog! I “met” Divya through a Facebook Social Media group and her site caught my eye because she often writes about travel, lives in a teeny tiny town (which I found interesting) and is like me, a former teacher. When I saw her series on a recent European River Cruise, I actually invited her to submit her story for the Momma To Go readers.
I know for me, family travel does not always mean me and my kids. As you know I went to Italy last March with a few of my favorite family members – my aunt, uncle and sister. And for some folks, friends mean family (kinda like #thegirlfriends). So whoever you hold near and dear, plan a trip, but here are some awesome tips for traveling with extended family:
Traveling with Extended Family
Traveling with extended families can be a lot of fun but it can also be overwhelming and stressful. I recently got back from traveling on a river cruise with my family in Austria and Germany! We spent seven days on the Danube River and we all had a great time.
Here are a few tips I picked up along the way on how to make the most of your time with family while also making sure you’re not driving each other up the wall!
Choose Your Own Adventure
With a cruise trip, it’s much easier for everyone to branch off and do their own thing. If you have someone who is interested in laying out at the pool all day, they’re able to do it. On the contrary, if you have someone who wants to take part in the off-ship excursions, they’re able to do it. And we all come back together in the evening for dinner. Everyone is able to vacation the way they like to vacation.
My family can be a little picture-happy. While it’s fun to take pictures and document all the great memories, it can also take away from the present moment. I made it very clear that it would really make me happy if we could limit picture-taking to 2-5 minutes at each event. (Yes, they CAN and DO spend a good 15 minutes taking different pictures with all the different combinations of families. “Okay, now let’s take a picture of the ______ family! Now let’s take one with the _____ family and the _____ family together!”). I love them and I want to take part in the things that make them happy, but I think if we can communicate our expectations, they’re more likely to be met.
The thing about traveling with other people is that you’re not always going to enjoy every single second of it. Recognize that it is a family trip, not a solo adventure. And be open-minded! You may find out that you really DO enjoy jet-skiing like your dad, even though you swore you wouldn’t.
And, when all else fails, just be grateful. You are fortunate to have a family that wants to come together to travel. They may drive you crazy. And they may embarrass you with their selfie sticks and their rambunctious personalities. But you are part of a select group of people that is able to travel with people you love oh-so-much.
About the Author:
Divya Mathur is the blogger behind Eat Teach Blog. She’s a special education teacher, a lifestyle blogger, an avid hiker, and a self-proclaimed wine connoisseur.