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Ask an Advisor: Family Vacations Outside the Box

family vacations

Q: We’d like to take a family vacation that’s a little different. We love to see new things and experience different cultures. Do you have any suggestions?

For the answer we turned to Anne Lischwe, travel sales manager at AAA Northeast.

Her first suggestion? Europe.

“People don’t necessarily think about Europe for a family vacation,” she said. “But it’s a great way to introduce younger and middle-school-age children to everything they’re learning in school.”

A European trip is easier to plan than you may think, she said. A guided trip or river cruise are both great choices, since you’ll be travelling with guides who can easily answer any questions that arise. Plus, a side trip to Disneyland Paris is always a fun excursion.

Letting your children get involved in the planning process will help get them excited about the trip, too. Let them help in planning which countries to visit, what attractions to see or even where to dine out.

“It can be a really engaging way to encourage them to see the world,” Lischwe said.

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Road trips – especially to national parks and the wide-open spaces of the West – are another option, especially for outdoor enthusiasts. They can be more cost-effective, since you’re not paying airfare and luggage costs – you can just throw everything you need right into the trunk.

And they’re infinitely customizable to your budget, time constraints and interests. Lische, who’s originally from the Midwest, has fond memories of visiting national parks with her family growing up.

“It’s a wonderful family bonding experience,” she said, “and a great way to make memories.”

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