Family Travel Planning: Everything You Need to Know as a Travel Agent

Plan unforgettable family vacations for your clients with these essential strategies and insights in family travel planning.
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Family vacations are cherished moments that create lasting memories and strengthen bonds among loved ones. As a travel agent, catering to the needs and preferences of families requires careful planning and attention to detail. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the essential tips and recommendations for family travel planning that cater to the diverse needs of all family members.

Understanding the Needs of Families

Before diving into the specifics of planning family vacations, it’s crucial to understand the unique needs and dynamics of traveling families. Families come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from young children to multi-generational groups, each with their own interests, preferences, and requirements. As a travel agent, your goal is to create customized experiences that cater to the diverse needs of families while ensuring a seamless and enjoyable travel experience for all.

A family sits on a dock and splashes in the waves on a family vacation.

4 Simple Ways to Wow Your Family Travel Clients

1. Choose Kid-Friendly Destinations

When recommending destinations for family vacations, consider destinations that offer a wide range of kid-friendly activities and attractions. Theme parks like Disneyland and Universal Studios are perennial favorites among families, offering thrilling rides, live entertainment, and character meet-and-greets that appeal to children of all ages. Beach destinations such as Hawaii, the Caribbean, and Florida are also popular choices, providing opportunities for sun, sand, and water sports that the whole family can enjoy. Additionally, cities with family-friendly attractions like museums, zoos, and aquariums offer ample opportunities for educational and cultural experiences.

2. Look for Family-Friendly Accommodations

Choosing the right accommodations is essential for ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable stay for families. Look for family-friendly resorts and hotels that offer spacious accommodations, kid-friendly amenities, and convenient facilities such as pools, playgrounds, and on-site dining options. Family suites or adjoining rooms are ideal for accommodating larger families or multi-generational groups, providing ample space and privacy for everyone to relax and unwind after a day of exploration.

3. Provide Practical Tips for Traveling with Kids

Traveling with kids can be challenging, but with proper planning and preparation, it can also be incredibly rewarding. Provide families with practical tips and advice for traveling with kids, including packing essentials, navigating airports and transportation, managing jet lag, and maintaining routines while on vacation. Encourage families to involve children in the planning process and to set realistic expectations for their trip, emphasizing the importance of flexibility and patience when traveling with kids.

4. Offer Specialized Services for Families

In addition to planning family-friendly vacations, travel agents can enhance their services by offering specialized assistance and support tailored to the needs of traveling families. Consider providing family concierge services to help families with special requests or arrangements, such as arranging for cribs or high chairs in hotel rooms, organizing babysitting services, or booking family-friendly dining reservations. Offer personalized recommendations for family-friendly restaurants, activities, and attractions based on the ages and interests of the children in the family.

Additionally, consider organizing themed family vacations or group tours that cater to specific interests or age groups, such as wildlife safaris, cultural immersion experiences, or adventure-filled expeditions. By offering specialized services and expertise that cater to the unique needs of traveling families, travel agents can differentiate themselves in the market and build lasting relationships with their clients.

A dad walls with his kids after working with a travel agent for family travel planning.

How to Plan Kid-Friendly Activities

When planning family vacations, it’s important to consider the interests and ages of the children in the family. Offer a diverse range of activities and experiences that cater to the varying interests of children, from outdoor adventures like hiking, biking, and wildlife spotting to cultural experiences such as museum visits, cooking classes, and local tours. Additionally, look for family-friendly tours and excursions that are suitable for children of all ages, ensuring that everyone can participate and enjoy the experience together.

Tips for Creating Family-Friendly Itineraries

Crafting well-rounded itineraries that cater to the diverse interests of family members is key to ensuring a successful family vacation. Begin by identifying must-see attractions and experiences that appeal to both adults and children alike, then weave them together into a cohesive itinerary that balances fun and relaxation. Consider including a mix of cultural activities, outdoor adventures, and leisurely pursuits to keep everyone engaged and entertained throughout the trip. Be sure to build in plenty of downtime for rest and relaxation, especially for families with young children who may need breaks between activities.

Flexibility is also essential, so leave room in the itinerary for spontaneous detours or unexpected discoveries along the way. By creating family-friendly itineraries that strike the perfect balance between excitement and relaxation, travel agents can ensure that families make the most of their vacation time together.

Harness the Power of Host Agencies for Family Travel Planning

Partnering with a host agency like Pickles Travel Network can significantly elevate the services and offerings of travel agents specializing in family vacations. Host agencies provide access to exclusive deals and packages tailored to family travel planning, along with comprehensive training and support to enhance agents’ expertise. With streamlined booking processes, marketing support, and professional networking opportunities, agents can efficiently plan and promote family-friendly vacations while benefiting from liability protection and peace of mind. Working with a host agency empowers family travel agents to deliver exceptional experiences and value to their clients while thriving in the competitive travel industry.

A mom walks with her kids to the airplane after investing in family travel planning.

Planning family-friendly vacations requires careful consideration and attention to detail, but the rewards are well worth the effort.

By understanding the needs and preferences of traveling families, offering kid-friendly destinations, accommodations, and activities, and providing practical tips and advice for traveling with kids, travel agents can create memorable and enjoyable experiences that families will cherish for years to come. 

Meet Pickles Travel Network: The Host Agency That Makes It Easy to Start and Scale Your Travel Business

Whether you’ve just started your travel agent journey, or you’ve been on it… Pickles Travel Network has the tools and resources to help grow your business. Unlike other host agencies, we believe in letting our members choose what works best for their business. Pickles Travel Network allows you to choose your commission rate, along with whether or not you want to charge planning fees. As a member, you’ll receive instant access to our list of suppliers, several marketing platforms and monthly coaching/trainings. 

IATA | CLIA Membership

PTN IATAN code: 45769253

PTN CLIA number: 00032299

When you enroll with suppliers, you must use PTN’s codes to receive a commission from us. Want to sign up for your own CLIA or IATA numbers for exclusive travel benefits? See below.

Get your own IATA/IATAN ID Card:

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The IATA/IATAN ID Card is the industry-standard credential to identify bona fide travel professionals. Key benefits include access to concessionary incentives from industry suppliers. Just added, the IATA MemberPerks program provides cardholders with daily savings at over 300,000 merchants across North America.

To be eligible, you must be registered with IATAN under PTN’s IATA number 45769253, working a minimum of 20 hours per week and earning a minimum of $5,000 per annum in commissions. You’ll need to send PTN a support ticket asking for approval. Once approved, we will send you a PRIN # to allow you to register with IATAN and ask for an ID card.

Get your own CLIA EMBARK ID:

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Obtain a CLIA EMBARC ID for travel discounts and FAM (Familiarization) trips. Join CLIA as an Individual Agent Member, under Pickles Travel Network CLIA #00032299.

Once you’ve registered, submit a support ticket to let us know, and we will approve your registration.