Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Now Is The Time To Plan For Your Vacation Next Year!

Now Is The Time To Plan For Your Vacation Next Year!

Summer will be upon us on June 21, and I'm still getting inquiries from a lot of families who are wanting to plan travel for June (which is halfway over), July and August. While I appreciate the inquiries (and hopefully potential business), it gives me pause that people are wanting to plan their vacations right now for travel (in some cases) that will take place in less than a month.

I understand that plans change and that sometimes people don't know what is going to happen; therefore it's difficult to make definitive plans, but with that being said, prior planning will generally save a lot of time, frustration, and money. Yes, I know that there are countless websites that purport unbelievable, deep discounted vacations, but at what cost? Unless you are a person that can just jump on a plane or cruise at a moments notice (literally), then planning is crucial so that you get the experience you truly want. Last minute travel can be great, but is not my idea of "fun" when you are doing it with a family in tow.

Then there is the money issue. A lot of people I've spoken to are in "sticker shock" when you tell them just exactly how much that trip to Disney World, Disney Cruise, etc, is actually going to cost for a family of 3, 5, 6. I've explained to numerous people that June - August are the most heavily traveled months by families; therefore, it stands to reason that the most desirable locales that families tend to frequent will also be filled to capacity, and in financial terms that means the family resorts have the upper hand.

Here are just a few recommendations that I have for any families who are looking to travel during the months of June - August:

  1. Select your top 3 destinations early and research them to narrow down to your top choice, that way if one or two are out of your budget, or just won't work, you still have other options to fall back on.

  2. Work with a travel professional to assist you with your plans, even if you have done your own preliminary research, there are a host of travel professionals that specialize in family vacations.

  3. Set a reasonable budget. Yes, reasonable is a relative term; however, some people want to have everything, without paying too much...it usually doesn't work out that way. Are there specials? Absolutely, but oftentimes you have to be on top of it and ready to book right then in order to ensure you get those specials.

  4. Don't be afraid to place a deposit. Most trips will require an upfront deposit, but they are usually fully refundable, less a nominal processing fee. If you change your mind within the allotted time frame, you can get that money back, but at least you've locked in a rate and that can become important when space is limited, which leads to number 5.

  5. When booking a cruise, the sooner you know, the better. There is a lot of volatility in cruise prices, and while there are times where the cruise ships are unable to fill the spaces and will offer some discounted rates, that usually doesn't happen very often during June - August. I've seen prices for cruises that were one price in January, but had almost doubled in their price by May. In that case, if a family had booked in January, then they are paying far less than the family who decided in May to go on a cruise in June.

  6. Stay positive and enjoy your vacation. It's easy to get overwhelmed by all of the planning, but I caution everyone against that overload that causes you to just want to "get it over with." This is something that cost a lot of money, and should be looked forward to, not dreaded!

Wherever your plans may take you - Chicks That Trip wishes you happy trails!

*photo taken from:http://www.ee.ucla.edu/~dmlab/iWAT2009/INFORMATION_IMAGES/Santa_Monica_Beach.jpg


No comments:

Post a Comment