The Plan For Your Best Spring Break Family Vacation
Spring break is creeping ever closer. Can’t you feel it coming? The first month of the new year has come and gone, and in its place is an ever-shortening span of time between you and your first big family vacation of the year. With a family vacation on the not-so-distant horizon, those rough plans you’ve made and dreams you’ve had will become that much clearer.
After all, vacation planning doesn't end once you've picked a destination or even settled on a resort. Rather, those initial bookings are only confirmation of your vacation, not a guarantee of what type of vacation you're about to enjoy. Since you’ve likely already mapped out all the spring break destinations, attractions, and activities you want to hit during your week away, the next 30 days leading up to your spring break getaway is all about bringing that dream itinerary to life. Here are three planning must-do’s for those 30 days leading up to your trip.
Brush Up on Event Calendars
Many cities don’t unveil their main events until the 60, or even 30-day, mark leading up to the event, mostly because local festivities aren’t always finalized months in advance. Getting a feel for your destination means exploring the events and activities unique to the area. Even though many of those attractions may not have appeared on the internet at the time you booked your trip, 30 days out is prime time to take a second look.
Orlando always has big events on deck, but these annual attractions are only a small piece of the puzzle. If you’re visiting in the spring, you’ll want to attend events like the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival or Mardi Gras at Universal Orlando. But you’ll also want to account for celebrations you won’t find anywhere else in the world, like spring training at ESPN Wide World of Sports or the local Florida Strawberry Festival, a county fair that commemorates that year’s strawberry harvest. It’s these events that separate common spring break destinations for families from truly unique escapes.
Book Your Passes
If you plan to celebrate spring by way of theme park, 30 days out is the time to make your moves. With 13 theme parks in the Orlando area alone, it’s easy to miss the ones that matter most if you don’t make a plan--or purchase your tickets--in advance. After all, theme parks make available their ride maps and information so you can get acquainted with the park long before you ever step foot inside. That way you won’t have to think twice once the parks are open for the day.
Even better, parks like Walt Disney World Resort allow you to secure your allotment of Fast Passes in advance. Soon-to-be park visitors can reserve passes as early as 30 days before arrival. You’ll be able to snag up to 3 passes in advance for each day you have ticketed entry to the park, and doing so will allow you to choose from the full range of attractions and time slots.
Get to Know Your Accommodations
With 30 days left to go before your trip, it’s also high time to get acquainted with your hotel or resort. What is included in your stay, and what should you bring with you? Are there plenty of on-site attractions to explore, or will you spend your evenings in the room? Can you cook your own food, or will you have to rely on fast casual dining options and whatever you can scrape together on-the-go? Collecting answers to questions like these will help you visualize everything you’ll need on-hand to make your getaway as smooth as possible--especially if you’ll have hungry and excitable kids in tow.
Beyond the day-to-day details, 30 days out is also your opportunity to get a feel for the immediate area surrounding your resort, or even the activities available to you within the resort. Unless you plan on spending your vacation exclusively at a theme park, you’ll want to plan a few additional locations where you and your family can enjoy much-needed downtime. Most hotels have their own events calendar, and often even maintain a comprehensive guide to nearby attractions. Hotels often know best when it comes to top local activities, so keeping an eye on their guides is the best way to get up-to-date spring break ideas.
Spring break may be fast approaching, but it doesn’t need to get the best of you. Planning may not be among your top five list of ways to spend 30 days, but it’ll make all the difference once you make it to your destination. The more people you’re traveling with and the more activity options at your destination, the more important it is that you’ve got an itinerary in your back pocket long before your plane hits the tarmac. Here’s to making this vacation your best family spring break yet.