From the day we shared our story with the world, the story of our eight month cruise on the Pacific, people have been asking us for advice and tips on how to travel with family. The gist of it is that it is not easy and that we all could use some help with that, so we thought of writing an article with a bit of advice for everyone who is interested to see and follow if they think it would help. Whether you travel aboard a luxury ship or a small yacht, the rules are the same.
I cannot stress the word respect enough! You need to respect each other, respect each other’s privacy and respect the needs and desires of others. If you respect each other, then everything will be alright. Keep in mind that the little ones deserve just as much respect as you do. Just because they’re kids, it doesn’t mean that they should be bossed around!
Keeping a good balance is very important when traveling, especially when traveling with family. You should have me time and also family time and they should be perfectly balanced. It is easier said than done, I know, but it can be done. If you don’t put time away for yourself, then you will start being frustrated and you will lash out at the people around you. Family time is also important. Just because you’re together 24/7 doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t do things together.
Arguing is Fine, Sometimes
Arguing is a great tool to blow off some steam, as long as you don’t exaggerate and know when to stop and be respectful. We’re not saying that you should do it every day, but a heated conversation could actually do some good to the relationship. When it happens to us, we say what we need to say and then take a break for a couple of hours. We then talk it out and every time we say what bothered us and end with a sweet i love you. It works every time. But be careful when you’re arguing, because it could really turn into something that may potentially hurt the people involved. If you let your anger get the best of you, you may do some damage that could be hard to repair and that is awful with family. Always stop and try to see things in perspective, as hard as that may be in a time like that.
Listen, Really Listen
If someone has something to say, you listen to them. If they want just to talk about their day, or they want to share something deeply important to them, you listen. You know that listening is a skill not many people have? I, for one, found it extremely hard to listen at the beginning of my relationship with Samuel. I was talking about myself and what I liked and what I disliked and when he started talking I would just find it really hard to concentrate, not because what he was saying was not important, but because I had a problem that I first needed to realize I had and then learn how to solve. It took me a while but I even taught my kids how to really listen to someone and it makes a world of difference.
Rules, Rules, Rules
Rules may not sound fun, but trust me, they are extremely important when traveling with family and especially for a long period of time. Each member of the family should think of a few rules that they then present to the rest of the family for discussion. It is utmost important to be truthful about what matters to you and what rules you want other people to respect. Also, while you’re on the road/sea you might think of new rules you would like to write down and that is OK, too. You can add things and take out things, because your family will understand. Our most important rule when traveling with family is Always think of what your actions will entail. This exercise will help shape your mind and make you more thoughtful towards others.
We hope this gives an insight on how to travel with family. We’ve traveled so much together and everything we learned cannot just be passed down in a couple of lines, there is so much more to traveling with family and keeping everyone happy. Do you have any thoughts on the matter? If you do, feel free to drop us a line in the comment section below. We love hearing from our readers!