Hello and welcome to my Message of the Month.
This month, I present an interesting trend or development that has pretty much become a pattern of behavior in modern families. It’s about how children can, or will influence most decisions made by young parents. Right from the choice of TVs and music systems, to picking designations for the family’s annual holiday. (They have a clear say in what, how, where, and when . . .)
These wish lists are a clear indication that the head of the household is open to new ideas – even from children in the family.
So what do young children want from their vacations?
- We want a new location every year
Older parents (maybe 10 years ago) looked forward to the familiar when it came to picking a holiday destination every year. And the familiar surroundings of a home resort offered a sense of comfort in many ways.
But young members of the family get bored easily with the “same old stuff” as they say. They want to explore different locations and look forward to new experiences, each time they go on a vacation.
- It’s nice to go to a beach location, for a change
For children, especially those from the concrete jungles of large cities, a beach location is an important highlight. According to young holiday seekers, a beach location gives the vacation a unique flavor. The magic of waves caressing beach sands and playing with your feet has no parallel, whatsoever.
For parents, the opportunity to lounge around in straw hats, and the lure of dramatic sunsets at beach locations is a really comforting feeling.
- We want the food to be interesting
Everyone likes the food to be interesting, but children seem to be extremely familiar with the choice of cuisines at a hotel or resort. Some of them have wonderful memories recalling and comparing menus at other resorts.
And I have seen some very interesting interactions between chefs and children during some of my vacations. The chefs too get into the spirit of things and maybe take a few detours on the menu to make the young ones happy.
- We can’t play board games the whole day
Today’s children don’t want to spend all their vacation time playing board games. They want to be doing discovery projects outdoors - exploring nature and the countryside. (And thanks to mystery books they read, they want to script their own adventure stories as well.)
- We want wifi that works
Not surprising that wi-fi is an important consideration on a holiday. They want fast wi-fi that works, without slow-downs or disruptions. (Holidays without wi-fi are a real drag for children.)
Come to think of it, even adults seem to be lost without a secure wi-fi connection. But that’s the world we live in today, and being connected to the internet - whatever the reason - seems to be important for both adults and children.
- Importantly, we don’t want to be treated like kids
Oh yes! That’s something we’re hearing these days. Today’s kids don’t want to be treated like kids – where they get out of the way, while adults have all the fun. Kids want to be part of the main event - they want to be right in the middle of all the fun.
And considering they will be 30 years old when the family timeshare membership runs out, it’s a good idea to invest in them.
The earlier, the better.
B. S. Rathor
Advisor & Member - Executive Committee