How to Have a Romantic Vacation -- Even When Traveling With Your Kids
My husband and I try to go on at least one trip a year without our children, but unfortunately it’s not always possible. While we have a lot of fun traveling with our kids, we still look to sneak in a little adult time when vacationing as a family.
You’re probably wondering: "How this is possible?"
Here are six relatively easy ways we've found to have a romantic vacation with kids in tow:
Choose Accommodations That Allow for Alone Time
It’s hard to sneak in some romance with your kids in the bed next to you. That's why we use the best travel rewards credit cards for families so we're able to afford more spacious accommodations. Consider booking adjoining hotel rooms, a suite or a vacation rental with multiple bedrooms. This allows you to keep an eye on your kids while also having your own separate space when it’s time for bed. Cozy up and watch a movie with a bottle of wine when they’re finally out for the night. If these options aren’t in the budget, try to at least find a hotel room with a balcony so you’ll still have some outdoor space for just the two of you.
Book a Hotel With a Kids' Club
Booking family-friendly hotels with a kids' club will definitely give you and your significant other some time for romance. While most kids' clubs are only open during the day, you’ll still have plenty of time to hang out alone. Enjoy a kid-free lunch, go wine tasting, relax on the beach or cuddle up in bed. Just make sure you pick the kids up on time!
Go on a Cruise
Booking a cruise is another way to have a romantic vacation, even when the kids are sailing with you. With major cruise lines like Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Norwegian, Celebrity and Disney offering kids' clubs, it’s very easy to have time for romance. Some will even keep your kids entertained when the ship is in port so you can participate in an excursion without them. The best part about dropping your kids off is it’s free -- and most clubs stay open until 10pm so you can have a romantic dinner! If you’re looking for some extra time alone after dinner, some cruise lines also offer babysitters from 10pm–2am.
Hire a Babysitter
Depending on your comfort level, hiring a babysitter while on vacation is a great way to engineer some alone time during the trip. There are many ways to find a babysitter when traveling. You can ask your hotel for recommendations, ask friends if they know people in the city you’re visiting who could recommend someone, or use national babysitting directories like Care.com. This will most likely be your most expensive option, but it will allow you a few hours without your kids.
Travel With Family
If you’re not ready to leave your kids with unfamiliar faces, travel with family. We travel with my parents once a year and it’s the perfect way to squeeze some romance in. While they aren’t there to watch our kids 24/7, they always give us one night to ourselves. We get the evening off (sometimes even overnight if we’re lucky), and my parents get their own time with their grandkids to spoil them. This is usually a win/win for both parties, especially if you don’t live near your kids' grandparents.
Traveling with family doesn't necessarily mean spending your entire vacation with them. Some trips we all stay together and do the same things. On others, my parents stay somewhere else and we just meet up a few times during the trip. Of course, grandparents aren’t the only family members you can travel with... the options are endless.
Travel With Other Couples With Kids
Traveling with other couples who have kids is the perfect way to sneak some romance in. Most likely your kids and friends' kids already know each other -- and if so, that makes this option even better. Each couple can take a night out while the other couple watches all of the kids. The kids also get to have a great night hanging out with their friends.
It’s very possible to enjoy some alone time with your significant other even if you can’t get take a trip on your own.
What's your secret to finding some time with your spouse on family vacations?
Monet Hambrick is the mom and writer behind The Traveling Child blog, where she shares tips on traveling with kids and how to afford travel as a family. Her motto is: “If kids live there, kids can visit,” and she and her husband have taken their 2- and 4-year-olds to 21 countries on 6 continents. You can follow their family adventures on Instagram and Facebook.