Kendal is a passionate and ambitions 16 year old from Jersey. She enjoys leadership roles/partaking in events and organizations, public speaking, listening to music, and photography. In a nutshell, she’s a little bit of everything.
“Pack your bags kids! We’re going on vacation!” Does this statement send a shock of grief and moans of exasperated “Ugh do we have to” through your household nowadays? With a 17 year old, this isn’t out of the norm. I bet you’re wondering, what ever happened to the days when you took your child to Disney World and everything went smoothly as planned. Activities that used to seem “fun” are now boring to your teenagers. So as a parent, what do you do? There are several ways you can have a great getaway for the whole family with your teen.
Believe it or not, most teens actually would be excited to go on a family vacation! (Just as long as there’s something in it for us.)
First of all, you need to create a vacation plan; but before you start jotting down what sites YOU want to see, consider how many other family members are accompanying you. Take into account your teen’s interests; include them in the planning stage. If they enjoy shopping sprees: scope out for places near big malls. Or even if they are the daring adventurous type, search up resorts that offer rock climbing or water skiing. Arcade game rooms and large pools are often available with various hotels as well. The active teenager will appreciate a golf course, basketball courts, or tennis nets nearby. More directly, just ask your son or daughter what they would like to get out of this vacation. It eliminates the guesswork and you can’t go wrong if THEY tell you what they would like to do.
Because teenagers are in that middle stage, in between adult and child, it seems there are less activities for us to do lately; too juvenile to do arts and crafts and not old enough to go to the bar and mingle. Well, many vacation spots have tons of activities for the 16 year-old guests such as the ones mentioned above and more.
Managing to squeeze in every site to see and every family activity on the list is near impossible. One of the best things you can do is have some down time to just relax. Make sure your teen has packed some things that will keep them entertained on the trip, like a good book, their laptop, or a couple CD’s. Kids don’t love being dragged around like a wagon all the time especially on a summer trip.
Generally speaking, teenagers want freedom on vacation. As much as we like you mom and dad, we’d rather not spend every second under you guys while on summer break. Remember, it’s our vacation too! So let them roam around a little. Young people like to meet new young people. When you or you and your spouse go down for a drink by the poolside, encourage your teen to take a walk on the beach and socialize. (Just remember to have them check in with you by sending a text letting you know where they are and who they’re with.)
Also, you might want to try bringing a friend along for your son or daughter on your trip. Doing so, keeps your kid entertained, and saves you a lot of the “Ugh, when are we going back home?”
All in all, a family vacation means spending time with each other and escaping from the stress and difficulties of everyday life, (even if it’s just for a week or so). So enjoy that trip to Florida or your cruise to the Bahamas with a happy teenager. Get out there and start booking your flight! There’s only a month of vacation time left!
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