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The art of travelling with family

With wintery cool weather here in Australia, it’s time for some holidays. But this year my holiday is a little bit different. As this scheduled blog post hits your mailbox, I’m spending time with my immediate family in Scotland where one of my brothers is getting married. As an expat most holidays tend to be spent either going back home to visit or having people coming to visit you. So the concept of spending time with family in a neutral space can be quite different, sometimes in a great way and sometimes in a very challenging way.

So as you might have guessed, I set out on a mission to create the ultimate checklist of creating a great time and lovely memories with loved ones.

  1. What’s most important? Trying to do everything will only exhaust you and create potential friction with your loved ones. Be clear on what one or two things you’d like to the most. Is it quality time together? Visiting a specific place? Relaxing? Doing activities?
  2. Don’t assume. Ask and be interested to hear the answer. Find out what’s important to the others in your team as well and make sure to agree as a group on what’s on the top list for the holiday.
  3. Look after yourself. If you need some alone time, that’s ok. If you don’t feel like doing all the touristy stuff that’s ok too. Enjoy your holiday and some time to pamper yourself in whatever way you need to.
  4. Relax! Holidays are meant to recharge our batteries. Allow yourself to relax and enjoy your time off regardless where you are and who you are with!
  5. You will most likely feel a bit challenged, because for a lot of us it’s unfamiliar to spend extended periods of time together, especially if it’s been a while since you last saw them. Allow yourself to feel what you feel. It’s common and ok!
  6. Show love. Hug, talk, hang out, tell them how much you care or do whatever you expression of love is. Life is short and most of us would like to show love and gratitude a lot more than we actually dare to do. (If there is some old crap there, try and park it if you can. Old stuff often belongs in the past, where it was created. If the old stuff bothers you enough to not wanting to go, then find a way of spending your holidays elsewhere with people you really love now. Working with a coach can also be really helpful to find the best way of moving forward with your specific challenge.)

What are your best tips for travelling with your family, especially when you have not seen them for a long time? Feel free to share in the comment field below!

PS: Relationships and friendships with people you leave behind is an important part of every relocation, which is why it’s a key part of our online relocation program.