Lisa Allan from Shire Travel Agency provides her tips on how to make your travel experience easier and more enjoyable.

* Holiday Games – Game ideas that families can enjoy while in the car/aeroplane or at their holiday destination (e.g. I Spy etc.)

For my family,“Spotto” is always a winner- this is where you have to spot all the yellow cars during your road trip and one of the kids has to keep the tally throughout the holiday to find out the overall winner at the end of the trip. A simple game guaranteed to keep them busy! 

* Travel Tips – how to you make the road trip or flight easier. How do you get your family packed and ready?  

We always advise families going on big road trips, that they should try and avoid driving overly long distances and to take regular breaks, ideally stopping every 4 hours to do some sightseeing or even do an overnight stop to break up the trip and see different places.

If you have younger children then it’s always better to book overnight flights so the kids can get some sleep on the flight and still stay in their normal sleep patterns. Similar to road trips, it is best to have a stopover especially on long haul flights to Europe or USA. It is a particularly good idea to do the stopover on the home leg of the journey and in my experience, its better to do a stopover in a beach resort as opposed to a city stopover as this gives you and the family time to relax and slow down before you get home and back into work life and school routine, it’s nice to have that family time to reflect on your holiday.

* Great Family Destinations. Where have you been to that is really family friendly?   – Best family holiday spots in AU  (top spots in each state) and overseas.

Gold Coast is always a top contender because of all the beaches and the choice of theme parks. Queensland can be an affordable holiday option for many families.

For older kids, I would say that Africa is a must see. Not only will they love the animals and the camping experiences but they will also get a sense of the African way of life, which is incredible and so different to everywhere else in the world

The Disneyland Experience is always a winner for families, but if you can’t afford to go to California there are the closer Disneyland Resorts to consider, such as:

Hong Kong Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland which is opening in 2015

I would also advise families to consider places like Fiji, as resorts there often offer deals that include offers where kids can stay, eat and play for free so you virtually pay up front and then don’t have to put your hand in your pocket again once you get there.

Club Med, which has popular locations in Phuket and Bali, is another top choice for families due to the various seasonal deals they offer that allow kids to stay, eat and play for free. I always advise families to talk to their travel agent and do some research before they decide on their holiday plans, as there are so many fantastic offers and locations available, they are sure to find something that will keep all the kids happy. 

Shire Travel: Background Information:

Shire Travel is an award winning Sydney based travel agency that specialises in family travel. (http://www.shiretravel.com.au/)

The agency was voted the Travel with Kidz Agency of the Year at the 2012 Travel with Kidz Awards which commend the best performing agencies from the Travel with Kidz network across NZ and Australia.