Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Tips for Your Spring Family Vacation

Content provided by Selective Insurance

When planning a family vacation you'll want to consider which destination will be perfect for your family. Then, it'll be wise to quickly refresh your knowledge of safety and wellness best practices that will ensure you, your spouse and the kids all have a great time.

Choosing your destination
Various tropical destinations, like the U.S. Virgin Islands and Martinique, will be warm because 
it's not peak season in either place, as Travel + Leisure, a travel publication, explains. U.S. News & World Report, a national news source, also cites the beaches of San Diego, California, and the grand Spanish cities of Madrid and Lisbon as having excellent 60-70 degree Fahrenheit temperatures. 

Cost is also a major factor. Intriguing cities in nations that have seen recent (as of March 2017) currency devaluation, such as Sydney or Buenos Aires, fit the bill here. Also, U.S. News, Travel notes on its website that 
family friendly destinations, like the Bahamas, or Sanibel Island just off the coast of Florida, are great budget vacations.

Tips for keeping it safe and fun
Vacation should be about leisure and enjoyment. But to guarantee that, responsibility, preparation and due diligence are all necessary. Let's take a look at the biggest safety factors you'll need to keep in mind.

Sun safety: It's all fun and games for your kids to be running around gleefully in the sun until hours later when sunburns appear and they're in terrible pain. As such, make sure they apply sunscreen properly. And don't forget to do the same for yourself! HealthyChildren.org, an online resource of the American Academy of Pediatrics, recommends sunscreen that is 
at least SPF 15 but below SPF 50, as the latter's actual effectiveness is limited. SPF 30 is a happy medium.

Storm and rip current safety: The best way to stay safe when a storm strikes your vacation spot is to avoid going outside. If you do get stuck in a sudden tropical thunderstorm, get out of the water and off the beach immediately. Even if there's only rain, you can never be too careful in these situations.

Rip currents can be extremely dangerous. If you or someone in your family encounters one of these strong currents, swim parallel to shore without moving toward or away from its general direction. If you try to swim out of it, it'll most likely trap you. The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration states that rip currents kill 
up to 100 people every year.

General beach and vacation safety: Neither children nor adults should swim alone in unfamiliar waters. You should also avoid beaches or resort pools that aren't being watched over by a trained lifeguard. Even if you trust your own judgment and instincts, you may not know exactly what to do in case of emergencies. HealthyChildren.org also recommends using the touch supervision system - make sure your children are within arm's length of an adult whenever they're swimming.

Also, remember that keeping the rest of your trip safe starts before you leave. Research the place you're going on websites like the 
State Department's travel advisory page and the CIA World Factbook, both of which have comprehensive info on foreign locales – everything ranging from population demographics and languages to histories of their political conflicts.

Once you arrive at your vacation destination, use common sense: Don't let your children go off alone, and consider enlisting the services of a guide when you want to explore areas or neighborhoods you're unfamiliar with. You should use currency rather than credit or debit cards whenever possible and only go on secured networks if using Wi-Fi to avoid the risk of identity theft.

If you have certain valuable items that you must carry with you on this trip, consider having your hotel lock them up in its safe. Most resort facilities have a safe, or safe-deposit boxes, on the premises for this purpose. Some even offer safes in the rooms themselves, but as Travel + Leisure points out, these may be
easier to crack than the hotel’s own safe.