You’re going to the beach! What could be better than feeling the soft white sand between your toes, a cold drink in your hand, and the kids happily building castles on the beach? Sounds perfect, right? Well… it certainly can be as long as you’re prepared for frequent trips to the bathroom, sunscreen reapplications, and the occasional outburst from an overly-tired toddler. I recently returned from a family trip to the Caribbean, so I had a few suggestions top of mind that I thought would be worth sharing.
Be sure to adjust everyone’s expectations – the kids’ and parents’ alike – for a long day of travel. Even though Sun Country offers convenient nonstop flights from Minneapolis/St. Paul to Punta Cana, Jamaica, Aruba, and more, it’s still a multi-hour flight on top of pre-departure time at the airport and a somewhat lengthy arrival process. Prepare the kids by detailing all the steps of the journey ahead of time. You could even create your own story complete with pictures of airplanes, airports, and ultimately, the beach. Fingers crossed that this will help them be more cooperative as they inevitably tire along the way. Of course, keeping some snacks and small rewards in your back pocket is a good idea, too.
People often think bigger is better, but when it comes to a vacation with the family, often a smaller resort might suit you better. Little kids tire more easily, and a lot of walking between restaurants, the room, and pool might mean you end up carrying them more. Each of the all-inclusive family resorts offers unique amenities and activities, so determine your family’s priorities and focus your research from there.
Similarly, do you expect to spend more time by the beach or pool? Choosing to upgrade to a pool view or ocean view room category may be worth it for the kids’ proximity to play time. You’ll be surprised by how frequently you end up going back and forth to your room to grab the forgotten bottle of sunscreen, sand shovel, or goggles that actually end up being in the bottom of your packed beach bag.
You could spend your entire family trip at any of the fabulous resorts in your destination and never have to leave, but sometimes it’s nice to shake things up for everyone. When choosing excursions with the kids, factor in the length of the excursion (four hours is probably the max for kids) and time of day. Is the morning or afternoon better for your family’s routine? Choosing one that offers something for the kids and the adults can also keep it fun for the whole family.
This is a win-win for everyone if it works for your family. The kids get to spend quality time with their favorite people, the grandparents can enjoy the opportunity to spoil the grandkids, and you will benefit from some extra hands to help entertain the kids. If you’re lucky, you might even be able to slip out for a quiet dinner on your own or a kids-free excursion.
With so much fun and playtime during the day and little willingness to stop and take naps, evening meal times can be a struggle for tired and hungry kids. Factor in everyone’s energy levels when choosing the evening restaurant and don’t stress if you have to rush through what would otherwise be a relaxing meal. And of course, after meal time, be prepared for the kids to get a full second wind and want to stay up for the resort’s nightly entertainment!
Employee Author Bio: Angela is a content writer at Sun Country Airlines. Her favorite thing about the airline is how quickly and conveniently it connects travelers to so many fabulous destinations. Her favorite? Portland (and the nearby Oregon Coast) – that is, when she’s not itching for some relaxing beach time in Mexico or the Caribbean.
Our employees not only love to fly, they have a wealth of travel knowledge, too. Whether they're an expert packer, know the best restaurants in town, or have any other savvy advice, we wanted to give them a space to share suggestions and expertise directly with you!