Group Travel

Group travel has both pluses and minuses. You need to actually think about it before you sign on to a group travel excursions.

Are you a scheduled person? If so, group travel can make you nuts. It's hard to get multiple people ready to go at a specific time and to agree when and where to go.

Are you flexible? If you're flexible group travel may be a breeze for you. If you have one thing in mind and do the opposite you need to ask yourself ahead of time if that will be ok with you. Will it disrupt you and cause you irritation?

Are the folks you plan to travel with like minded? Do they like to do the same sort of things? If not, you could have a problem. If group 1 is active and wants to get up early to exercise; and group 2 wants to sleep in, get up leisurely and take the day as it comes without things being pre-arranged or scheduled. You might have conflicts. Will the early birds be quiet, are they content to do their own thing and leave you be?

Group Travel can save you money. But, it can also actually increase the costs. Are you all sharing equally in the cost of a condo vs each of you paying for your own hotel room? If you're paying for your own hotel room, you need not all have the same accommodations. Example ocean view generally costs more than side or street view. Are you eating out or eating in? If you're eating out, the choice of restaurant can up the cost of your trip. Likewise if you're eating in, are you sharing the costs? Does everyone like to eat the same thing?

Are you a person that likes things neat? If so, going on vacation sharing a house or condo with people who aren't can be an irritant to you. Example: You have a beautiful condo and every night people leave their shoes everywhere, their drink glasses on end tables, personal care items like sun tan lotion on the table. Access your situation, what you like, what your travel partners are likely to be like and decide if ground rules need to discussed before the trip.

If you're at a house or condo and are eating in. Who's doing the cooking, the cleaning up? Are you going to get stuck with it all the time? Is it being shared. Really a good idea to discuss this before hand.

Do you want to do some things by yourself, or with your spouse and not necessarily everything with the group? If so, discuss it before hand. People can get their feelings hurt if they expect all activities to be group activities and you want some time alone.

What time do you like to eat dinner? If you're a 5 o'clock person but traveling with people like myself who like to eat at 7 ish, you have a potential problem.

There is no right, or wrong way to go about this. We all have our routines. The important thing is to discuss things ahead of time.

Here's 2 of the biggest area's that can be a source for discord in a group. Pets and smoking. Pet people tend to think everyone should love their pets they way they do. If you're not a pet person, you probably don't want to travel with people who are or want to bring their pets. Time tables can be an issue here, when and where to stop. Where to eat, what to do with the dog in the car etc. Smoking, if you're a non smoker, chances are you don't want smoke in your hotel room, condo, or beach house. If you have people in the group who are smokers, discuss ahead of time how that's to be handled. Is there a reasonable place outside for them to smoke?

Organize yourself, think about what you want out of vacation, and by all means discuss things BEFORE hand that will give everyone the best possible means of having a wonderful vacation.

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Comments

  1. Ah, the interesting world of group travel! I've been organising sort of group travel for my Scout Group for the last few years and I have to say it has been very rewarding as teh Scouts get a lot out of it. I think it can help get the costs down a lot as you can hire bigger accomodation and slit the costs 16 ways -it also helps with the food and chores when you are there. What it doesn't help with is the planning before hand! A lot of work needs to be done, expecially when researching the prices and planning activities for such a large group. But hey, all worth it in the end. Taking them to the Lake District in the UK this year for walking and climbing...

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  2. All good points and with kids it makes more sense. Kudos to you for taking the necessary time to plan things effectively.

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