Travelling as an Intergenerational Familyby Emma Longden
One of the best things about having my children young is that both my mum and my nan are involved with the children’s lives. My nan, who is now in her late eighties, helped out with my eldest when he was a baby and I was in my last year of university, and my mum looks after the children now whilst I am working. However, we don’t just see them when we need child-care, both my mum and my nan have come away on holiday with our family over the past few years and it is amazing to be able to make memories with them and the children.
Three years ago, we went away to Spain during half term and it remains the children’s favourite holiday. Not only did we go with my mum and nan but we also met up with my nan’s brother and his wife, who have a holiday home in the next town, whilst out there as well. It was lovely for the children to get to know their extended family.
More recently, we went on a mini-break to Scotland in February and took my mum along with us. Luckily, as we are a family of five, we have a seven-seater car, which allows us to travel together around the UK, which cuts travel costs. It does tend to get expensive when staying in hotels, as we are unable to all stay in one room, but opting for self-catering accommodation, like the lodge we stayed at whilst in the Scottish Highlands, helps to keep the price of the stay down.
[Read more: Involving Grandparents from an Early Stage]
We have been away to Disneyland Paris, not just with my mum but with my brother and sister and my aunt and her children too. We are a close-knit family, and it is so nice to enjoy experiences together. When my husband and I got married in Santorini in 2017, it was really good to be able to have some of our family out there with us. My nan even acted as my bridesmaid, which was so lovely.
My mum and dad split up when I was a toddler, and we went away a lot with my nan and grandad when I was young, so it’s nice to do the same with my own children now. Going away as an intergenerational family means that we experience a different range of actives, which is fantastic for the children. Rather than sticking to activity centres and theme parks, we have National Trust and English Heritage memberships and always make sure to visit their venues when we travel in the UK. We also get out in nature and go for walks, as this is something my mum enjoys. I feel like it is giving the children a varied upbringing, which can’t be a bad thing.
Now my nan is older, it is sometimes challenging for her to take part in some of the activities we do, but she still enjoys holidays with the children, whether it’s a week in the Lake District or a breakaway in Italy. I know that both the children and I will look back fondly on the trips we have taken with her as they grow up. Making memories travelling together is amazing and something I would highly recommend to those who don’t already go away with older relatives.