How often does your family travel together?
Research (along with our own gut instincts) indicates that travel may actually strengthen family bonds, so why not travel more often?
A Disney poll conducted by Kelton research firm surveyed 1,000 parents and found that 97 percent of the parents said the kids learned new things about them while taking family trips.
The same survey found that families think of themselves as more excited and more affectionate while on vacation. But you probably already knew that from experience.
Here are a few ways traveling together as a family strengthens bonds.
Closer quarters brings everyone together
When you’re on vacation, you’re all basically stuck in the same place.
This sounds like it could be a recipe for disaster, but it’s often a good thing. Yes, the close quarters may agitate some sibling rivalries or cause petty arguments, but they can also bring some intense bonding. These are the kinds of moments where you might be arguing one minute but everyone is doubled over in laughter the next.
Shared experiences create shared memories
As you get older, you realize you have the most in common with people you’ve shared experiences with. You may have completely different personalities, but those memories cement a bond that cannot be broken.
Your kids will always remember the road trip you took to Disney – and that time dad snorted milk out of his nose at the rest stop. You’ll come home with stories your family will retell for the rest of your lives, and that’s meaningful.
All vacations create these types of memories, but road trips seem to be special. Maybe it’s all the travel time, but these family trips seem to create the most memorable moments. So go ahead and load up the new 2019 Atlas and start your next adventure.
Get out of your comfort zone together
Speaking of memories, let’s talk about what makes a memorable moment.
Have you ever driven to work on autopilot? You somehow got from point A to point B, but you’re not 100 percent sure about the details in-between. It’s all a little fuzzy.
This happens because our brains know the routine so well that we can get a little lazy. But think about it this way, you didn’t even remember that moment in the seconds after it happened. Because it was routine, your brain barely registered it.
That’s a bit of an extreme example, but it shows how we’re much less likely to remember things that fall within our comfort zone. When we’re outside the zone, that’s when we’re most alert – and that’s when lasting memories are made.
This may be why family vacations are so memorable. When your kids get older, they’re less likely to remember specific moments spent on the couch at home, but they’re very likely to remember events that took place on a train ride, even if those events were mundane.
Do you need any more excuses to plan your next family vacation? It’s time to invest in the family bond.