Typically, the biggest task in planning a family reunion is arranging lodging and transportation. You have to plan your family reunion in a way that will allow all of your family members the opportunity to attend. Wherever you plan to have your family reunion, you will need to be able to provide an affordable way of arriving there and an affordable place to stay for each family member. Before finalizing your family reunion, time and location you must first plan the lodging and transportation.
In the effort to find affordable accommodations at a time when everyone can attend, be sure not to sacrifice the quality of the location of your family reunion. You want to find a good setting with all of the accommodations you'll need. Below are steps for choosing transportation and lodging for your family reunion, with attention given towards getting the most from your family reunion.
1. Consider transportation services providers
Often when handling a large group of people, you will get a better price package. You can use the services of a travel agency that can offer group discount packages and incentives. However, be sure that everything in the group package meets the level of quality you are seeking. Also, it helps to use travel agencies you or people you know have used and been happy with before.
2. Check family reunion websites
Family reunion planning sites often have links to information on finding specialized discount family reunion travel packages. Many will also contain feedback forums, which can prove invaluable.
3. Check for insurance coverage
If you go with a travel agency or direct through a transport company, make sure that the company insures the luggage of your family members in case of loss or damage. You should also check with your credit card providers, as many will insure luggage on trips booked using your credit card.
4. The early bird gets the cheap worm
Most travel providers will provide you with a discount for making an early reservation for your family. If you can find out exactly how many people are traveling with you and when you will be traveling many months before the reunion, you may be eligible for a big discount. You will also want to check for any penalties or complications that will result if you need to change the number of reservations or cancel the reservation a couple of weeks before the trip. If you do book early, be sure to update your reservation one to two weeks before your family reunion trip. This will keep you and the transportation provider on the same page.
5. Don't overlook comfort
It is important to choose a form of travel that will be most comfortable for everyone on the trip. This is especially true if you have invited elderly family members to the family reunion trip. Making the travel part of the trip comfortable will leave everybody fresh enough to enjoy the other parts of the trip and family reunion.
1. Determine how many people for which you will need to provide lodging
If you have a large number of family members attending your family reunion, you will need to lodge in a large venue such as a resort or adjoining hotel suites. The venue should also include a large meeting or conference room where you can all get together. If you have less than thirty people attending the family reunion, you can get by with smaller venues and reserving small spaces in restaurants or even hosting in your backyard.
2. Consider the age and activity levels of your guests
Children tend to enjoy more adventurous and outdoor family reunion venues such as log cabins in the woods. Young adults may be as adventurous as to enjoy staying at hostels in the inner city near a theme park. Mature adults may wish to stay in reasonable comfort, but spend most of the day away viewing exhibits and sightseeing. The elderly may prefer a place with stately comfort and all of the amenities and dining as nearby as possible. Many of these groups may defy stereotypes too. What is important is that the place you choose as lodging for your guests will make all of them feel comfortable without being bored.
3. Determine your budget constraints
There is no shame in fitting your travel lodging into your budget. The quality of a family reunion typically has more to do with what people do together than whether they are getting self-serve or full-service lodging accommodations. However, if you have the money and special plans for a fine hotel or resort, you will find that good service ads an extra touch of leisure to the family reunion. You can find good family reunion ideas for all budgets.
4. Consider availability of open space
One of the things that makes nature alluring for family reunions is the great amount of space for roaming and exploration. If you are holding the family reunion in a room, you want to have plenty of leg room and walking room to enjoy interacting with family members. This is especially true with large family gatherings. This is one reason park picnics and barbecues are so popular.
5. You can't have fun unless you feel safe
Make sure you and your family are going to be staying in a safe location. If the lodging is in an area that may be prone to crime, there should be plenty of security. These things are hard to verify if you are traveling to a distant location. Fortunately, many hotel booking sites offer some information about location. Also, you can always check with the police department in that area for crime statistics. Don't forget weather and geologic phenomena when you consider safety. Florida during hurricane season, a four story hotel built on a fault line or a Caribbean resort on an island with political strife may not be appropriate places to hold your family reunion.