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Monday, June 28, 2010

Tips for the Organized Traveller

Years ago, my husband and I decided that family trips would be a priority.  After leading a senior high church group for seven years, we'd heard teens talk repeatedly about their favorite family memories growing up.  They always involved vacations.  So, before we had our own children, we knew vacations would be important.

As a result, we've become quite the travellers, and have learned a lot about getting and staying organized.  Here are some of our favorite tips.
1)  Buy a cheap pocket folder for each vacation.
2)  As you read about interesting places to visit, store that information in the pocket folder.
3)  Create a schedule for each day of your trip. 
4) Make a list of the things you want to do on vacation.
5)  Then, start penciling in your days with activities, events, places to see, etc.
6) If your trip involves driving to different stops, include a place on your schedule for evening accommodations and the distance between each stop.
7) If you are buying tickets to anything, buy them ahead of time and save money by doing research.
8)  Put all confirmation information, tickets, brochures in your pocket folder.

If you start planning ahead of time, you can find all kind of deals.  We use http://www.tripadvisor.com/ to research hotels, restaurants and activities.  If anything looks suspicious, we check it out on Trip Advisor. 

We start planning about a year ahead of time for all of our trips.  That way, by the time we go, we are ready to enjoy every moment with our family and not stress out over details.  Plus, if you pay as you are planning, you can spread out the costs and reduce your dependence on credit cards.

Lest you think we are control freaks, I should say that we leave plenty of unscheduled time in our trips. Plus, we've learned that our children want lots of say in what we do, and so we get them  involved from the beginning. 

By planning our trips this way, we've been able to take our children all the way from Acadia National Park in Maine to Denali National Park in Alaska.  They've seen Indian villages in Colorado and swamps in Louisiana.   We consider it all an investment in our family.

If you have any questions on vacations, feel free to ask.

Grace & Peace,


  1. Hi Glynnis! Would you mind sharing some of your family's trip itineraries? My family just returned from a fabulous trip to Grand Canyon, Zion, etc. I used a friend's trip plan (they went last year) as a starting point and it made planning so much easier! I adapted her itinerary to our family's likes/dislikes. It drastically reduced my planning hours. Happy July 4th!

  2. I have scheduled family trips like this since I was about 12 and now continue to do it with my own family = ) I love the blog and so glad to find someone like minded on organization!