When we think of family vacations, we tend to think of traveling during the warm summer months, but believe it or not, traveling during the holidays is an absolute must! You get to bond with your loved ones in a fun stress-free environment and will have amazing memories that will last you a lifetime. You also don’t have to worry about who will host the big day or who will prepare the main course, the side dishes or dessert, which can be very stressful. Travel expert Julie Ruditzky Loffredi joined me for an interview to dish on why it’s so important to get away with family during the holidays, why the mountains of the Northeast are the perfect vacation spot and much more!
Candace Rose: Why is it important to get away with family during the holidays?
Julie Ruditzky Loffredi: “Well, AARP did a recent study that found family vacations are really important. They help build memories and connections with one another, and the holidays are a great opportunity. You may want to avoid the airports because of the crowds and delays, but road trips are a fantastic budget friendly alternative. AAA is also reporting that gas prices should be really low throughout this season which is good news there. Children and parents oftentimes have days off from school and work, activities kind of die down, so it’s really a good opportunity to kind of hit the road as a family and enjoy a vacation.
Candace Rose: With cooler weather, the mountains in the Northeast see an increase in popularity. What family travel trends are you seeing for mountain vacations?
Julie Ruditzky Loffredi: “We also often talk about skiing, but what’s actually trending in Northeast Pennsylvania, here in the Poconos is indoor water parks. I’m at the Kalahari Resorts and Convention, it’s the newest family owned, it’s authentically African themed. It’s called the world’s coolest water park by Conde Nast traveler. It’s really nice that this has the best of both worlds, especially for those looking for a family friendly getaway.
Candace Rose: Do you have any tips for planning the perfect family trip that will ensure everyone is happy?
Julie Ruditzky Loffredi: “Choosing a destination with something for everybody is really important. Expedia put out a survey that found that kids love that theme park environment, but they also want to be a part of the trip planning process. Here at Kalahari they’ve done a really good job at creating activities for all ages, so the adults and grandparents can hit the spa, the restaurants, and the bars…and then join the kids for the water park experiences. The toddlers have their own area, the older kids can even learn how to surf, so it’s really a fantastic solution to have everything under one roof.”
Candace Rose: Once we decide on the destination, what tips do you have for making the vacation stress-free and memorable?
Julie Ruditzky Loffredi: “I always like to tell families to do their research ahead of time, set a budget, and also when you’re on your trip make sure to schedule some downtime in that itinerary, so you’re not exhausted by the end of the day. Also, checking in with family members during the trip, making sure that they’re happy and they’re excited to be there, that’s important to make everybody happy during their family getaway.”
Candace Rose: Do you have any additional tips or information you’d like to share with us?
Julie Ruditzky Loffredi: “For more information about Kalahari Resorts, you can go to KalahariResorts.com.”