How this family has made family travel a reality despite challenges

Let me tell you the story of a reader (let’s call her Amelia) whose email made me cry.

Every time I read it, my chest would constrict, my eyes water and the tears would creep it’s way up from my tummy to my throat.

I receive the most beautiful emails from our readers and I’m so incredibly grateful. I need them because they inspire me to continue doing what we do, but also they help me to forget about the very few haters that sometimes infiltrate our space.

And the day before she sent me her email we’d had a couple of them.

Amelia’s email is one of the main reasons why we do what we do.

To help people travel more and create better memories. To help them make a slight shift in their thinking so they can believe they can. To help them find ways to do it. To help them overcome their own barriers to what they think they can and can’t do.

To show them if we can do it so can you.

Kings Canyon Rim Walk, Northern Territory, Australia

Amelia had dreams to travel with her family, but she saw far too many roadblocks to making it a reality: school, young kids, lack of money, remote location and work and annual leave limitations. She continued reading our blog and with each new post subtly began to change her thinking.

Then the opportunity came to travel, not too far from their home, for her child’s sporting event. Instead of writing it off as too difficult, her new perspective caused her to say, “Why can’t we?” The wheels started turning and a plan fell into place.

I loved how she said,

“It’s quite amazing how this simple shift in thinking has manifested in further opportunities for travel. Within the space of two months, I’ve gone from having no travel plans to this…”

She then went on to describe the seven holidays she now has planned for herself and her family until next year!!! I’ve got tears and goosebumps again as I write that sentence.

She sent me a picture with her beautiful children and the tears welled again because I knew the bond they were about to create because of travel. And I knew how much guts it took for her to stretch out to grab that dream.

I thought of the cruise getaway she planned with her husband and the bond that would deepen between them. And I thought of the self-love and care she was giving herself. Imagine the domino effect of that on her life from now on?

So if you struggle to believe you can make it work because of the obstacles like social obligations, work commitments, school appointments, mortgages and bills to pay, think of Amelia. Remember how she made the travel flow to her with a slight perspective adjustment. And believe if she can do it you can too.

Amelia simply changed her thinking from limitation to possibility. Instead of saying “I can’t because,” she said, “what if and why not?”

Why not just see? How can we possibly make this work?

These empowering questions open up a space for flow, for creative thinking, for solutions, and for miracles.

Let’s look at what Amelia did:

  • Used an opportunity to combine her child’s sporting events with a family travel experience. There’s a greater motivating desire here. Have a family holiday while allowing your child to pursue a sporting talent and passion.
  • Camped – she was able to jag a great deal at a campsite during school holidays. It’s not impossible (and National Parks are even cheaper or sometimes free.)
  • Asking the boss for some annual leave (Mental health is important for work productivity – use that angle with your boss!)
  • Volunteering as a chaperone for a school camp – genius! Might seem like work, but not if you’re going to the snow and have never seen it. ( I saw a lot of the tourist attractions in Dublin by taking my English language students there on excursions.)
  • Using a  career conference as an experience to also travel.
  • Look for deals and specials.
  • Travelled close to home
  • Using special moments like anniversaries and birthdays to have travel experiences instead of presents and parties.

Once the first trip was organised and she could clearly see it was manageable, and how easy stars can align if you take the action toward the dream, she replicated the process.

How can you make this work?

  • Follow Amelia’s lead. Ask the right questions. Change your perspective.
  • Do a bit of poking around. Research, Price, compare.
  • If one path doesn’t work, seek another one until you can make it work.
  • What is playing in your favour – annual leave, career educational, school trips, staycations, Great Uncles 100th birthday? Use those as opportunities to travel.

This is the process we have used all our lives. We know the barriers are possibly there, but we don’t view the world through these eyes. We push them aside and focus on how we can make it work and craft an experience around our strengths and universe offerings.

I spoke about this in my recent post on the secrets to saving money for travel.

Most people focus on the cappuccino cutbacks, which can be a small step, but the focus should more be on how can I create, rather than cut back in order to get what I want.

Creation is the source of all things. So when you stand in life from this position, new worlds open up for you. All you have to do is open the doors. As William Blake says,

doors of perception quote

We hope that if, for whatever reason you feel family travel can’t work for you, you can look beyond those barriers and find a way, no matter how small, to bring it into your life.

Because in a world that is full of chaos, and busyness that always seems to give to everyone else: school, friends, work, and appointments, your family needs you to find some space for togetherness. To play and explore together. Your family needs those happy, unencumbered times.

Your children will forget everything else, but they’ll never forget these moments and the amazing way they felt travelling with those who love them most.

Need more family travel tips and inspiration?

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22 thoughts on “How this family has made family travel a reality despite challenges”

  1. Christina Davis

    I understand what you mean about changing perspectives and seizing the moment – carpe diem! It’s been quite some time, but I used a military move to sneak in some family vacation time. We opted out of flying and drove cross country to our next duty station and we still talk about that adventure til this day. I learned a lot of traveling lessons. However, the process was very time consuming and still expensive. If we didn’t have some travel money, I don’t know that we would have been able to make much of the trip happen. Don’t get me wrong, we have no regrets. It was awesome! But still looking for ways to do more of that. Husband and I just surrendered to our need to connect more than just the need to pay more bills so we can do a staycation for our upcoming anniversary. We’re so looking forward to it! Thanks for the article!

  2. This is such a beautiful story – I love that you wrote about the personal connection that you share with one of your readers, but also talked about how this translates to everyone who stops by to read your blog. 🙂

  3. Caz, your post spoke to my heart. When our grown children get together they often talk of the amazing family holidays we had in Transkei South Africa and in Mozambique….sun, surf and diving plus the local laidback lifestyle. Now two live in Australia and are exploring there with frequent trips to Indonesia. And we get together in places like Bali and Thailand, Cambodia and Laos. We LOVE travel and the odd disconfort warrants the awesome sights and experiences!

  4. Traveling with the whole family is really hard to be organized. In my opinion, it’s good to research places where every family member could relax completely and have something to do – swimming, shopping, playgrounds (for the kids).

  5. I think the moral is ..if there is a will there is a way. making family travel happen can be a little tedious, but if you want to you can.

  6. This is very interesting story about Amelia.
    I always like to travel with family member. Thank you for informative discussion.

  7. Everyone can travel, just need to say “Stop, I am going!” I also was in Sicily for one week holidays in 2005, when I decided that I need to turn back for a longer time! I return back home and started to learn Italian language. After 10 months I moved to Sicily for few months and that was my greater experience I could ever had. Never forget and can only recommend the same to others that are still waiting.

  8. I forget how much I like your blog and miss reading it. I’ve gone nearly two years without a vacation at all. Hard to believe considering my “previous life.” For me, I had to get some things in order and change my priorities. Now, I want to take vacations again as a family.

    I’m encouraged and excited about this. I always appreciate yours and Craig’s vulnerability. I think our travel styles, goals, and writing are (or were, in the case of writing) similar. Reading your posts again have been an inspiration to soul stirred to travel again.

    I feel like we would be great friends. My boys and your girls would probably get along well 🙂

    1. I think so too Jeremy! And we’re still definitely keen to hang out once we take to the road over there. Perhaps you could come Down Under? I’m so glad your soul is stirring to travel again. Sometimes we just need time away from it to understand what to miss!

  9. It’s so inspiring to know that traveling with kids is a viable option! I was fortunate enough to be dragged around on trips with my family from a young age since I was the last child 🙂 Now with my husband (we just got married last month) we are feeling the pressure to get all our traveling out of the way whilst achieving our career goals before we have kids. It’s nice to be reminded that it doesn’t have to be one or the other and that with some planning and an open mind, you can have it all. Now, we are working hard to make traveling our life through travel blogging and a small import/export company. It’s all in the beginning stages but we are so excited and inspired by experienced, established bloggers like you! Thanks for the inspiring blog!

  10. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful story. I have always liked to travel. But as a working couple with two kids, vacations have always been given a sidestep. This post has given the spark to reignite my passion for travel.

  11. I love your blogs… just discovered them. I have spent a lot of my time in my life indoors whether it be agoraphobia/anxiety, studies or work. Well now I am about to finish my degree and I have moved to a different country and find myself wanting to use my degree in some way so I can live off the road, explore the country I am now in. I have been doing an inner battle between a full-time job and leaving my kids. I don’t want to leave my kids I want to earn money while with them and to top it off be on the move as well. Here is my predicament. I am a sole parent on welfare. How can I make this happen? I feel after a life time of trying to get to where I am I finally want to be free. Any suggestions would be fantastic.

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