Often when friends are having a social get together, the idea of holidaying together will come up. It may not be long before you are all sat down with holiday brochures planning your trip away, but before you book you may want to discuss your plans in a bit more detail.
Holidaying with friends or family can be great fun. It means you have other people to talk to, if you have children you can offer to baby sit for each other so each couple has a chance to go out on their own and you may be able to find a cheaper holiday if there is more of you going. It is important to set some ground rules before jetting off to ensure that everyone has a nice time.
Firth thing to sort out is paying for the trip. If you are booking a villa for example then you will need to split the cost. If one family is bigger than the other then you may need to work out the price per person.
It can be hard spending all your time together for a week or two, so talk about doing activities with your own family or just your partner so everyone gets time apart. This can help avoid fall outs.
When booking a holiday, the flights can really bump up the price. Often when you look at the breakdown you can find that the flights costs a similar amount to the accommodation. This is why it often does not cost much more to go for 10 or 14 days as opposed to 7.
To try and save money on flights you need to be able to be a bit flexible. Some flights are much cheaper at certain times in the day or certain days in the week. When searching for your flights, tick the box that states you can be flexible up to 7 days and see what comes up. If you are booking quite far in advance then you can often scroll through the months to see the cheapest flights available in that time period.
Another way to save money on flights is by flying from a different airport. Some of the airports will offer more or less the same flight for hundreds of pounds less! Checking these two simple things can really help slash the price of the holiday and possibly allow you to go for longer. Flights prices change every day so it is important to keep checking if you want to get the best price.
Camping holidays can be the cheapest way to get away as a family. You can often pay less than £10 per night for a very basic site and around £20-£25 for a site that has more facilities. IF you have your own tent, you can often book a campsite quite last minute, although during summer holidays, popular sites and locations do tend to book up fast so if you want a pitch with electric hook up or an extra large pitch for example, you may need to book a few weeks in advance.
If you are not sure exactly where you want to go you can use search sites such as Pitch Up which allows you to easily compare a number of sites based on location, price or facilities. You can enter the dates you want to go and then select as many or as few filters as you like to narrow the results down.
You can often book the site directly through the website often paying a small deposit with the balance due a week or so before you go.
Always read plenty of reviews for a site before booking so you can get a feel for what it is like and what the facilities are like.
When it comes to packing, many families have numerous arguments about how it should be done. We Brits always seem to take far too much stuff with us when going on holiday as we worry that we may need something that we do not have with us.
When it comes to packing the car, there is a way of doing it to allow you the most space and to be able to access anything you may need on the journey. Ideally before loading anything in to the car you need to have it altogether in one room. This will allow you to first check that you are going to be able to fit it all in. If not then you have time to go through and streamline your packing to make more room.
Once you have everything together you should start by loading the heaviest items in first. These will be very hard to access whilst on the journey so you need to make sure that you will not be needing anything. If you are taking suitcases then you will probably want to put them in first so they can lie flat. If you are taking food and drink they ideally need to be wedged in so they can not spill or get damaged. Items such as pillows etc may be able to go in with the passengers to free up room in the boot.
If you have just booked a holiday then you may start to get excited and plan things that you would like to do when you get there. You would think that once everything is booked and paid for you should be able to switch off and only worry about the packing but unfortunately it is possible to experience issues with your travel or accommodation, which if not sorted out quickly can cause havoc and delays and risk spoiling your break away.
If you have booked accommodation yourself rather than through a travel agent, then it is worth ringing ahead at least a week in advance just to confirm your booking and double check what you may need to take with you. By doing this, you can pick up on any problems such as errors on the booking system which may not have recorded your booking correctly.
If you are flying, then you will need to check your flight details to make sure it has not been cancelled or delayed. This can often only be done 24 hours or so prior to your flight time. If you are unsure, then you can always call the airline direct to confirm.
Sat navs have been used for a good number of years now and where as previously you had to buy a separate satellite navigation system to use in your car, you can download apps for your phone or tablet which can used to navigate you to your chosen location.
One of the most popular sat nav apps is the one by Google. It is free to use and is often very reliable and up to date. It can show you traffic on your route and divert you a different way if it picks up delays. You can usually change the settings within these apps to avoid toll roads, selected fastest route over shortest and avoid motorways. This allows you to still have control over which way it is going to take you.
With these apps you can also look over the whole route before you set off meaning you will have a rough idea of which direction you will be heading in. It will also tell you how far the journey is, how long it will take you to get there and estimated time of arrival which will update depending on driving speeds. You can even view the route in street view which will allow you to look out for places that you can use as markers for turning or to view where nearby parking is.