I always love when summer comes around because it is when we can hit the road and explore. During the planning months, I always ask the kids to research places and things to do in cities that we have never visited. It is fun to see what they come up with and it makes it easier for me to limit their technology time. Nothing kills a vacation more than everyone constantly on their phones or tablets. Technology drives our lives and I admit that it is hard to disconnect but sometimes you must. I have travel rules for the family so this makes it easier and the rewards are great.
RULE #1: Plan
Realizing that everyone has different interest we know that the activities have to appeal to all which is why we create list of things to do for every city that we plan to explore. Most activities can be found by just a simple google search but cities such as St. Louis have gotten smart and provide a list for you. This list features 25 Things to Do in St. Louis. I was actually surprised that St. Louis offered so much that I added in to our place to visit.
RULE #2: Compromise
These list can get pretty long but we all agree the end result should be family fun. We can't bash another's idea and in fact we look for ways to combine several. Museums and amusement parks are great ways to accomplish this. We frequent a local museum here often because my daughter loves the history while my son likes to see paintings. Most cities have museums where the kids can get a hands on experience and that stimulation works for everyone.
The amusement park works for everyone. Even if the thought of the roller coasters at Six Flags is not appealing the food and games make up for it. My family loves to ride, the faster the better. I considered planning some trips where the focus is on roller coaster rides.
RULE #3: Time Limit
Use of iPhones and tablets is limited to one hour per day unless stated otherwise. I never thought we would be able to accomplish this but after a day out they are usually too tired and want to go straight to bed. This has also encouraged them to use their time wisely. When they are feeling smart the kids will take turns on each other's devices stretching the time to two hours. It is funny to see them try to work it out.
RULE #4: Be Open Minded
It is so easy to say no to eating at a different restaurant or trying something new but I constantly tell my kids the importance of an open mind. The only way we know we don't like something is to try it. My compromise is that they only have to try it once. My son developed a love of grilled veggies while on vacation. This rules allows them to avoid stereotypes and just focus on the fun.
RULE #5: Pictures are a Must
Life passes by so quickly and I require at least 3 family pics. When they were little, getting pics was easy but now no one wants to do it hence the rule.
Do you have rules for family vacations or is it just whatever happens? Is your motto Family Fun always? Explore St. Louis wants to help you have family fun. You can win a 2 night stay, tickets to area St. Louis attractions and a $50 Visa gift card just by sharing your family's funniest using the hashtag #FunnestFamily. You can find contest details here . Don't delay as it ends on 6/30/2016