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The phrase ‘cheaper by the dozen’ may apply to baked goods but traveling with a large family is definitely not cheap or easy. Ticketing, accommodations and transportation are all a little trickier when you’re traveling with a large family. Your growing family may also include a wide range of ages and balancing the needs and desires of toddlers and teenagers can be overwhelming. Here are six ideas to help plan your big family’s next vacation.

  1. Consider a ‘Staycation.’ No, we’re not recommending you stay at home but perhaps close to home. Traveling just a few hours can be just as enjoyable, and far less challenging, than going a great distance. You can please everyone with a great hotel pool, some unfamiliar local attractions like museums and a good restaurant with a broad menu.
  2. Vacation rentals. Most hotel rooms aren’t designed for large families and sometimes an extra cot just won’t cut it. Vacation rental homes are a great option for large groups, or even multiple families. Not only will everyone get their own bed, you’ll also have a full kitchen which can come in handy with a large brood.
  3. All-inclusive. All-inclusive resorts and cruises can ease planning and offer something for kids and adults of all ages. Bringing the grandparents along? They’ll enjoy it too. Budgeting is also easier as all of your meals and activities are included in your price. Great discounts are available if you book ahead or travel in the off-season.
  4. Explore a City. If you’re trying to please a wide range of ages and interests, a city will likely offer what you need. Activities, food and attractions that appeal to all ages are easily accessible in a big city.
  5. Hit the Road. If staying in hotels or renting vacation properties doesn’t sound appealing, rent a RV that can hold the entire family and hit the open road. A road trip is always a memorable family adventure and allows for spontaneous excursions.
  6. Involve kids in the planning. Kids are always excited about something they had a hand in making or organizing. The same rule applies to travel. Allowing each child to select one activity or outing during the vacation gets everyone invested in the trip.