Traveling with family can be among the best experiences you’ll ever have. Now that you’re older, you might find yourself dividing your time between caring for the very people who took you on those early adventures and your own children. Why not take your whole group on a multigenerational family trip?
Wherever your family adventures take you, here are some family travel tips to help you get there safely. Most importantly, you may also want to consider buying travel insurance so that you and your family are covered while on vacation.
Multigenerational Travel Tips
Once you’ve decided what to do and where everyone wants to go, it’s time to think about how you can make sure they have a fun and safe time. Here are our tips for family travel.
Consider mobility or physical limitations
Whether you decide to take a family road trip or head off to a family adventure overseas, make sure you consider any mobility or physical limitations of anyone in your group. If a parent is wheelchair-bound, call the airport to make sure assistance is available, it certainly should be.
If, for example, one of your parents uses a walker, make sure your activities can include them. Be sure to call the hotel or lodging provider beforehand to ensure that they have the accessibility features your family members need. If they don’t, you’ll still have time to withdraw your reservation and book with more suitable accommodations.
If any of your family members is hearing or sight impaired make sure every stop on your itinerary has an alternative for them. For example, many museums will have audio devices for guided tours, and some may have sign language interpreters on staff.
Pack for worst-case scenarios
When you’re traveling with your parents and your children, the number one priority is safety. You should do everything you can to ensure the safety of your loved ones at every point of your trip.
Travel disruptions and mishaps happen. Your luggage may be lost, a family member could fall ill or become injured. You can make these unfortunate circumstances a little more tolerable by packing and preparing carefully. Keep all your family’s valuables in your carry-ons, pack more prescription medication than needed, to account for any possible delays, pack a first aid kit for minor medical mishaps and, if you’re traveling internationally, opt for travel medical insurance, to cover urgent medical care. You can find more helpful packing hacks and travel tips from travel experts here.
If you’re relying on public transportation, it can be challenging to wrangle little kids while also tending to older parents. Get to the airport with plenty of time to spare. This cuts down on the number of long lines your parents have to stand through. It also helps keep everyone in your group safe. Find more ways to navigate the recent airport chaos here.
Keep your kids occupied while traveling
Whether you’re in the car on a family road trip or on a plane over the Atlantic, the last thing you or your fellow passengers want to hear is a screaming toddler. Make sure to pack their security blanket or stuffed animal in your carry-on so that you have it ready whenever they need it. Bring a few easily portable toys along for the ride, so your kids have something else to focus on. We’ve got more tips for traveling with kids here.
Tips for Buying Family Travel Insurance
One of the best things you can do to help keep your loved ones safe while traveling is to buy trip insurance (for American residents only) or, if traveling abroad, travel medical insurance for your family. With so many different plans on the market, how do you know you’re choosing the best trip insurance option for your family? We’ve got some tips to help you decide.
Purchase your policies well ahead of your trip
While you can usually purchase travel medical or trip insurance for your family (for American residents only) up to 72 hours before your departure, it’s best to purchase your policies early. It’s best to buy your travel insurance plan soon after booking your flights, hotels and any other prepaid reservations your trip requires. This also gives you more time to find the right plan for your loved ones. If you forget to buy travel insurance, you can buy it at any point during your trip, but coverage won’t start until the policy effective date.
Consider the unique insurance needs of every traveler
If you’re traveling abroad it’s especially important to consider the individual medical needs of everyone in your party. Depending on the age and physical health of the family members in your group, you may not be able to be on the same policy. For example, if your parent is 80 years or older, some policies would not cover them. These insurers would consider your parent’s age too high of a risk factor. The good news is that there are a few travel medical plans that do cover travelers 80 and older. Similarly, if you or your child had a pre-existing condition, you’ll need to find a policy that covers pre-existing conditions.
The other thing to consider is the length of stay. In order to be under the same trip insurance or travel insurance policy, every family member traveling with you would have to have the same departure and return dates as you. This means that if your parents are only planning to join you on part of your trip, they would need to be on their own policy.
Don’t just choose the cheapest plan
When shopping for both trip insurance or travel medical insurance for your family trip, you definitely want to keep cost in mind, especially if you’re on a tighter budget. But this doesn’t mean you should automatically go for the cheapest plan you see. Cheapest doesn’t always mean you’ll get the best family travel insurance. This is particularly true when it comes to travel medical insurance. When you choose the cheapest option, you may not get comprehensive coverage. This means if anyone in your family gets sick or is injured during your travels abroad, you may end up having to pay significant medical fees.
Choose a Cancel For Any Reason add-on
Adding on Cancel For Any Reason or Interruption For Any Reason to your basic trip insurance can give you peace of mind, especially if you are traveling with a large group. Things happen, and this will allow you to be able to recoup some of your costs in the event of needing to cancel your plans. Just like the name implies, Cancel For Any Reason trip insurance allows you to cancel your trip before you depart for any reason and still recoup some eligible prepaid travel expenses.
Interruption For Any Reason trip insurance works the same way, except it reimburses for certain unused prepaid travel expenses, in the event that you have to cut your trip short and return home for any reason.
Consider group travel medical Insurance for international travel
If you’re traveling in a group of 5 or more, consider group travel medical insurance. The biggest advantages of group travel insurance are that it’s easier to manage because everyone in your family would be on the same policy and you can usually get a cheaper rate. Another plus to getting group travel insurance is that the members of your group don’t have to be related. So, if you want to take your child’s nanny along, or invite your best friend, they can be included on the same plan.
Wherever your family travels take you next, we hope it’s a fun (and safe) adventure filled with joy, wonder, and lots and lots of amazing memories.
Looking for Travel Insurance for Your Family Trip? VisitorsCoverage Can Help
Whether you’re looking to purchase individual travel insurance plans for your family or want to keep them all on the same plan, VisitorsCoverage has the travel safety solutions you’re looking for. Still unsure about travel insurance? Our Customer Success Team of licensed travel insurance experts is here to answer any questions you might have.