Planning a family reunion can be hard work. From finding accommodations for everyone, to planning activities, and reserving dining options, there is a lot to think about. We often get asked if we have any tips to make this process go smoother. After over 35 years of helping guests find the perfect Outer Banks vacation home, we have seen a family reunion or two! Here are our top tips to follow when planning a family reunion at the beach
Tip #1: Start Early
No matter the size of your family, it is always best to start your planning early. Not only do you need to work around the schedule of all your family members you will also have a better selection of accommodations, dining establishments and activities to choose from.
Starting early can even save you money. For example, Outer Beaches Realty offers a 5% discount on year in advance reservations. With the Vacation Layaway program, you can even pay for your accommodations a little bit at a time.
Tip #2: Book Your Accommodations First
Finding accommodations for your family can be the hardest and most frustrating part of planning a family reunion. Who will share a room, or even a bed? What size bed do they want? Does grandma need to be on the first floor, or can you secure a vacation home with an elevator? Meeting everyone’s needs & wants can be nerve-racking.
Take your time in choosing the accommodations. You do not always need to all be in the same house. Sometimes it is better to book multiple smaller homes that can fit a wider range of budgets and needs. Use the map feature on our website to find homes close to each other, or give us a call at (844) 814-7456 and one of our Vacation Planners can help you out.
Tip #3: Make a dining calendar
It can be expensive to eat out every night when on vacation. and who wants to be responsible for cooking each night. The best thing to do is to share this responsibility amongst your entire family. Pick a couple of nights to eat out as a family, but then create a calendar and assign each family member, (or family group) a night they are responsible for dinner. This leads to a wider variety of different food choices, as well as a spreading of the workload.
One idea we like to recommend is to let one of the nights be the kids’ responsibility. There are so many easy, kid-friendly recipes out there that make meal time an activity as well as a dining option. Here is a link to a website full of kid-friendly meals.
Tip #4: Look for Free Stuff To Do
Vacations in general can be expensive. And when you are trying to book an activity for a large party, it can be difficult to find things for everyone to do together, or that everyone can afford. We recommend that you research things to do that have little to no cost involved. This can be easier than you think. Holding family board game nights, or having a bonfire on the beach are easy to plan and can create a number of memories.
Destinations such as Hatteras Island offer a number of free or low cost things to do. Hiking or biking trails, historical landmarks or even searching for seashells at low tide are all activities that groups of any size can participate in…and don’t require any extra costs!