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(ARA) - Family vacations are an important part of every child's life. Even if you're visiting a state park during summer break, you hope to create lasting memories, all while having a lot of fun. Many families would love to travel overseas for European vacations, but feel that such an adventure is nothing more than a pipe dream. A number of factors often present themselves as deterrents, ranging from perceptions about costs to thinking that family travel to Europe is too difficult to coordinate.
Taking your family to Europe might be far more accessible than you'd ever imagined. If your dream is to take a multi-generational trip to see the marvels of the Old World, keep these tips in mind for family travel to Europe:
1. Age matters. Adult travelers to Europe, whether they're parents or grandparents, will find travel relatively easy and always engaging. But for the younger members of the family, travel experts recommend kids be at least 8 years old. By that age, school curriculum, energy levels, flexibility and interests are all in good alignment for a trip to Europe.
2. Find a fully escorted trip. With so much to see and do in Europe, it's tough to narrow things down. And it's even more difficult to plan out the logistics on your own, particularly if you're traveling as a family. By booking a fully escorted Europe tour, you'll be sure to see the best sights and stay in the best places, on an itinerary put together by people who are experts in European travel. Putting the planning in the hands of expert planners alleviates the stress of traveling, allowing you to sit back and enjoy the trip.
3. Find trips geared toward kids. Europe's incredibly rich history could - and has - filled countless books with infinitely expanding information and nuance. While that might interest your kids in years to come, it might not be right for them at the moment. That's why it's important to choose European tours like those created by Image Tours that are tailored to kids' interests, on a kid-friendly schedule. Keeping children engaged and interested in what they're seeing and doing is essential - but not all tour companies provide the right balance of information and activities to cater to families.
4. Find free time to sightsee at your own pace. It's important to remember that taking an escorted tour doesn't mean you'll be spending all your time on a pre-determined schedule. Some tours, like those offered by Image Tours Inc., give you free time to do some self-guided exploring. This can be a particular advantage for families who might want to indulge children's interests in family-friendly sights such as a toy museum, or take time for a physical activity such as hiking in the mountains.
5. Visit multiple destinations. Getting the best value for your budget is important when you travel as a family. While you might feel that costs would limit you to visiting one country or city, a Europe tour that includes multiple destinations can be surprisingly affordable, thanks to the competitive prices that tour operators are able to negotiate. A tour that visits multiple countries will not only let your family experience the rich diversity of European culture, but traveling around a bit can help hold the interest of younger travelers.
Going abroad with family members will be a highlight of any childhood - and maybe an entire lifetime. By choosing a tour that is designed with families in mind, a trip to Europe is not only more affordable, but more enjoyable.
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