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Daily Tips

Chateau on The Lake Resort & Spa in Missouri Offers Ozark Mountain Christmas

Nov 24, 2015
Chateau on the Lake Resort & Spa in Missouri is offering a special holiday package called the “Ozark Mountain Christmas Package” from November 7-December 30

Eileen's Favorites

Traveling with kids is messy, frustrating and wonderful, just like raising kids. Taking the Kids is your family travel resource to get the most fun-and memories-out of your family vacations and the most bang for your travel buck. Eileen Ogintz has decades of experience as a journalist, writer and blogger tracking travel trends. She is a mom who has traveled with her three kids and others in the family from Orlando to Yosemite, the Caribbean to Alaska, to Europe and beyond. Taking the Kids is here to help you show your kids and grand kids the world, have a good time in the process and build memories that last a lifetime.

Seasonal Specials



Wherever you find yourself this holiday season, make time to grab the kids and grandkids and check out the holiday lights whether in your neighborhood, nearby city, at the local zoo or a theme park. The displays and entertainment get better every year! Our roundup of the top holiday displays across America is compiled with the Family Travel Forum.

Taking the Kids Family Cruise Guide 2015

Norwegian’s new ship Breakaway

More kids than ever are cruising with their parents in the Caribbean, Europe, Alaska or far flung destinations like the Galapagos Islands and even the Arctic. Welcome to our Taking the Kids Family Cruise Guide for 2015.



Eileen’s Travels

Weekly Column

Volunteering on Vacation: Memorable Adventures from Family Trips

Nov 19, 2015  |  comments
Enkereri students
When the two Whitaker teens talk about their holiday trip to Tanzania two Christmases ago, it’s not the animals they saw on safari that proved the most memorable, as amazing as the elephants and giraffes were. It’s how they helped a small unofficial orphanage.... more »

Travel Diary

The Disneyland Hotel celebrates 60 years of putting families first

Nov 17, 2015  |  comments
Memorabilia at Disneyland Hotel
At a time when hotels catered to businessmen, not families, Walt Disney thought there should be a place where families could continue the fun they had in Disneyland. On the same day.... more »

Eileen's Blog

Delivery of Travel Content Dramatically Changes, Influencing Brands and Vacation Planners' Decisions

Oct 28, 2015  |  comments
By Eileen Ogintz and Kyle McCarthy Sun, sand and happy kids. Just make sure the little ones don’t eat the sand. Maybe your family would rather be hiking in a national park or exploring a foreign country. Wherever you go this summer, all of us want the same thing: The chance to relax and make happy memories, Vacation memories, families say, not only last a lifetime but are among the most important they have, helping them to get through the tough times. Just thinking about the vacation ahead can put the fun back in everyday life, Disney Consumer Insight Team’s Amy Foster told the attendees at the First TMS Family Travel Summit in Orlando. “Fun is not frivolous,” she said. “Fun is precious.” According to new research from MMGY Global reported by Peter Yesawich at the Summit, the vast majority of family travelers want time to relax, unwind and spend time together. Eighty percent want to see new places (forget customer loyalty) and 75 percent want an easy to get to destination. Supervised kids clubs aren’t so vital to these time-starved families said Yesawich, with 78 percent of families opting for free WiFi over kids programs on their last vacation. Digital media in all forms was tasked with making the travel research and booking process easier and less confusing for families, who want to be assured that their needs for connecting rooms and adjacent plane seats will be honored. With demand for family-friendly summer vacation destinations and multigenerational accommodations and organized tours at an all-time high, according to industry sources, those attending our first TMS Family Travel Summit looked at what “family travel” really means today. For the instant summer vacation marketing guidelines that emerged from TMS Family Travel Summit, and you can read more in our report. The 35 Summit attendees from around the country lapped up the data points, generating 54 million-plus #TMSOrlando impressions throughout the weekend by sharing insights with their followers. Marketers take note: • The classic married couple with two kids represents less than half of all American families. • Single parents run 16% of all households in the industrialized world and, social media statisticians would have us believe, moms control everything—including vacation planning. • Grandparents rock—especially when it comes to vacations. More than a third of grandparents who are active travelers have traveled with grandchildren just in the past year, according to the 2013 Portrait of American Travelers • Generation C -- the collectors, creators and curators among us-- are driven to share every experience on and offline. • American families now average a shorter length of stay on vacation --2.73 nights – but are still traveling as the economy recovers, According to research by D.K. Shifflet, The group cited social media’s potential for broadening the family market, from helping less affluent families to find vacation values to sharing advice. At the same time, Dorothy Dowling of Best Western International notes that with women managing their own incomes, their household expenses, and the finances of their own parents, the “sheconomy” controls approximately two-thirds of America’s wealth. How has this affected family travel? It has put women and moms in the driver’s seat when it comes to making vacation planning destinations. One of the most important trends identified at the Summit was the need to satisfy Generation C. Their constant need for stimulation and new experiences means the travel industry must provide activities to satisfy every age group, and make those experiences photogenic as well, so that guests will share them. Social media, researchers and attendees agreed, is the sales tool that can share those memories and turn happy family vacationers into brand evangelists. Here are seven ways Summit attendees—leading travel media and marketers—believe can improve the family travel experience: 1. Offer vacations in all price ranges so that less affluent families can afford to vacation. 2. Empower today’s maker families to book trips themselves by keeping it simple and transparent.
 Make getting to your destination easy and fun. 3. Welcome diversity in staff and guests . 4. Make guests feel like everything they do is new and unique. 5. Give them free WiFi and encourage them to share memories about you. 6. Arrange activities for all ages together. 7. Have your photographer and filmmakers on hand to record the fun. Makes sense to us.
News release: Family Travel Influencers at 5th TMS Family Travel Conference prove to be case study in travel industry content paradigm shift to social media... more »

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Special Features


ABCNewsEileen's series of Kids Guides to great American cities, published by Globe Pequot, was featured by ABCNews on a week-by-week basis.
I LOVE NEW YORK Teen Travel Writing Scholarship
I LOVE NEW YORK Teen Travel Writing Scholarship

Travel advice from your kids!

Alamo Infographic FINAL 4 3 14 Savvy parents are increasingly including their kids in family vacation planning. Find out how.
Calling all teens!  New York State's Department of Tourism is looking for great New York State stories and we'd love to hear yours! Apply for this scholarship, blogging about your most fun, interesting, and unforgettable visit to our great state. - See more at: http://myfamilytravels.com/content/60536-i-love-new-york-teen-travel-writing-scholarship#sthash.Lz4mcGyv.dpuf
Calling all teens!  New York State's Department of Tourism is looking for great New York State stories and we'd love to hear yours! Apply for this scholarship, blogging about your most fun, interesting, and unforgettable visit to our great state. - See more at: http://myfamilytravels.com/content/60536-i-love-new-york-teen-travel-writing-scholarship#sthash.Lz4mcGyv.dpuf


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