You’ve found the holiday property which looks just perfect for your family. The photos are drop dead gorgeous, the sun seems to shine every day, the rural idyll you are looking for. That’s it, that’s the one for the perfect family holiday, perhaps the first time you have been away since the children were born.
But hang on a minute, it is so easy to get carried away and when you arrive find that the holiday you thought would soothe away all the stresses and strains is going to involve some compromises, some extra expense you had not thought about or worse still, driving miles with young children just to find somewhere for the perfect meal in a local bistro that existed only in your dreams.
Here are 10 questions you might not think to ask when booking a holiday with young children.
- Is there information provided on child friendly places to visit and places to eat which welcome young children.
- Is there equipment for young children eg high chair, cots, potties, bottle sterilisers, safety gates, and are there any supplementary charges these.
- Is the pool warm enough for children to use every day during their stay.
- Are there any neighbours and would a crying baby upset them? Settling a child to new surroundings can be stressful enough, but coping with complaints the next morning only adds to the stress.
- Are the cleaning materials used eco-friendly, eg no dangerous chemicals left within reach or used for cleaning the property.
- Is there a Doctor’s surgery close by, with someone to help with translation.
- Is the property owner resident and familiar with local emergency services and the local hospital.
- Is the property pushchair friendly in order to walk to the local boulangerie or buy fresh food locally
- Is there any traffic noise and how far in the property from the road.
- What are the memorable things about the property that children will remember and take home with them, eg collecting eggs from the chickens, patting a donkey, learning about how vegetables grow or the names of wild flowers.
These tips are based on personal experience and comments from guests who have stayed in holiday properties with young children.