Get the Whole Gang Together Stress-Free
Travel planning takes lots of coordination and flexibility—especially when your group spans multiple generations. With our advice, everyone from your kids to grandma to your second cousin once-removed can experience a stress-free Ocean City vacation.
Plan your itinerary together—and write it all down
It’s bound to happen in large groups, especially with lots of kids, teens and tweens in the mix. Some will want to ride go-carts or hit the waterslide while others want to play mini-golf or do some shopping. (Adults can have their own preferences, too!)
Taking the time to create an itinerary together early in your stay will help to ensure that all involved get a chance to do something they want. Sure, there will be compromises, but all parties will be well-aware beforehand. And knowing their activity is part of the plan should make younger family members more willing participants.
Plan outings suited for large groups
It just takes a little digging to find destinations that will interest (almost) every family member. Surely there is something that’s new and surprising to everyone at Ocean City’s Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum. Tanger Outlets has enough stores and restaurants to appease double-digit families. And the horses of Assateague Island National Park are sure to captivate your whole crew. Wherever you go, remember to allow some extra time. Getting large groups ready and out the door can be a challenge.
Go your own way
When vacationing with extended family members or multiple families, you may feel pressured to do everything as one large group, from morning to night. But some separation can make vacation memories sweeter. Make sure everyone understands at the beginning of the trip that it’s perfectly acceptable to break off into smaller groups for activities and meals. If you and another family have children, consider taking turns doing things with all the kids and giving the other grownups some alone time. You’ll all end up at the same place at the end of the day, and you’ll definitely have plenty of time to spend together.
Expect the unexpected—and roll with it
All the planning in the world can’t account for bad weather, a closed attraction or a kid with a cold. Being flexible, especially with the youngest and oldest members of the group, will ease tension on your vacation. Adapting to changing situations will also help the family stay in the present moment, rather than lamenting what may have been missed or rushing toward the next thing. Going back to the itinerary idea, you may want to prepare a special list of things to do on rainy days or extremely hot days.
Choose a property with amenities that make life easier
When vacationing with a large group, opting for space is one of the smartest things you can do. Make sure there are enough bedrooms, extra bathrooms, a comfortable living space where everyone can sit—or even multiple living spaces—and a designated area for kids to play by themselves.
Don’t underestimate the conveniences of home, either. Especially for an extended stay, having a fully-equipped kitchen, a washer/dryer, central air conditioning, Wi-Fi access and TVs will ensure everyone has their own space and comforts—and a stress-free time.
Determine a budget that works for the whole family
Before the trip planning process even begins, you need to talk budget. Vacationing in volume means some family members might be able to open their wallets wider than others. Determining—at least roughly—the amount you’ll spend when embarking on activities together will alleviate the stress of feeling pressured or having to make big choices in the middle of your getaway.
Share meal responsibilities
With a fully stocked kitchen, you may not want to eat out for every meal. To avoid breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner prep falling on one family member, plan to share the cooking. You can divide by days or particular types of meal. Having everyone chip in for pizza or crabs is always a winner.
Ask older kids to babysit
Just because you’re on a family vacation doesn’t mean you can’t have an evening away. If the kids in your group are a variety of ages, have the teenagers babysit! In addition to allowing you a nice, quiet adult meal, the kids—perhaps cousins who don’t see each other often—can make a night of it, too, with popcorn and a movie.
Book your big family vacation today
Now you’re ready to plan your next Ocean City, Maryland, stress-free getaway. Vantage Vacation Rentals has plenty of rental properties ideally suited to large and multiple families. Contact a friendly Vantage reservation specialist today at (410) 723-2002, or browse and book direct at www.VantageOceanCity.com.
Founded in 2007, Vantage Vacation Rentals specializes in delivering exceptional experiences for both vacation property owners and their rental guests in popular Maryland destinations such as Ocean City, Annapolis and the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay, as well as the Delaware beaches and North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Vantage serves owners with extensive property marketing and promotion as well as comprehensive property management services to help maximize rental income opportunities. With over 550 managed properties, Vantage makes it easy for vacationing guests to find and reserve the perfect option—then enhances their stay with exclusive benefits and discounts. To learn more about Vantage Vacation Rentals, visit VantageOceanCity.com, EasternShoreVacations.com and VantageMB.com.