When family travel is packaged, taking particular care of the accommodation, itinerary and location is vital, says Debora Maestroni, Market Manager for Italy at Tourvest DMC.
“We take into consideration things like distance travelled, family friendliness, affordable accommodations that have rooms or interleading room options. We look at malaria-free reserves where necessary, as well as family-friendly programmes at lodges where the children can participate whilst the adults are on game drives, as these factors certainly make family travel more attractive,” says Maestroni.
Andrea Schaffner, Market Manager for North America at Tourvest DMC, echoed Maestroni, saying that paying attention to what the properties offer children makes family travel packages more appealing. “We look at specific properties and, if a promotion is available for families, that is even better. The larger hotel chains like to offer a complimentary basis for children under the age of 12 in the same room as their parents and of course the rooms can accommodate children and adults,” says Schaffner.
“Smaller boutique hotels have created villas that cater specifically for families and include family value-adds such as babysitting and children’s activities.” Game lodges are creating child-friendly areas where they can spend time and learn about conservation, and it’s all included in the rate, she adds.
To make a family holiday more appealing many of the hotels make an effort to provide special meals for children such as milkshakes, hamburgers and pizza. GoVacation Africa makes use of these special offers and value-adds to packages to promote family travel, says Nola van der Merwe, Team Manager for UK at GoVacation Africa.
“It is my opinion that family travel has increased as parents try and get away from their hectic work schedules, and the fact that social media has taken over our younger generation’s lives. Parents now want to try and connect with their children more and choose to go on holiday to bond, away from social media interruptions and work,” says Van der Merwe.