Group trips are a fun way to explore the world with people you love, and make unforgettable memories with each other. Whether it’s with friends or family, a group trip is a great idea for any occasion. If not done right, group travel can become a disaster waiting to happen. The last thing you want is a group trip leading to a rift in your relationships, so these tips will give you the best chance of avoiding that. Planning group trips don’t have to be hard. Here is the checklist you need for planning a group trip that will successfully leave the group chat!
Choose Your Group Travel Companions Wisely
Who you travel with will play a big part in the quality of your trip. When traveling in a group, the more people means the more preferences and personalities. Even though you may love your friends and family dearly, they are not all going to be the best travel companions. Make sure you choose them wisely. If you know someone is not the type of person you can tolerate during travel, it’s best to not invite them. When planning a group trip, choosing your travel companions can also effect you financially. For example, if you prefer budget stays, like hostels, don’t invite someone who prefers luxury hotels. Differences like this can lead to disputes and end up costing you more during the trip.
Planning A Group Trip Checklist
Set Clear Budgets
When planning a group trip you’ll want to make sure everyone has an idea of the how much money they will need to dedicate to the trip. Set clear budgets for things like airfare, stay, food, and activities. You don’t want to plan a trip based on a certain number of people just for them to drop out as the trip approaches. If this happens, it would also cause those who do attend to end up paying more than what was planned. Setting a budget will allow everyone to decide ahead of time if they can make the trip or not. The group can also decide if budgets can be adjusted so more people can attend. Establishing clear expectations will help ensure that no one is caught off guard by the travel costs.
Confirm Group Travel Dates
One of the most important factors of planning a group trip is choosing travel dates that everyone can agree on. Moreover, it’s important to make sure that the dates are chosen well in advance. This way people are able to make work or family arrangements ahead of time. You also want to choose travel dates as soon as possible so reservations and accommodations can be made before everything you want to do gets booked up. If you’re visiting a destination during peak season, the longer you wait the less options you’ll have.
It also helps to be flexible when choosing travel dates. The more flexible attendees can be, the more likely everyone is to agree on dates. If you’re planning a trip for a large group it may be more difficult. Planning in advance and being flexible will make for the best turnout. Once travel dates are confirmed things get significantly easier!
Choose A Group Leader
When it comes to any group, too many people trying to be in charge is never a good idea. Planning a group trip successfully relies greatly on organization. Have the group decide on 1-2 group leaders to delegate certain tasks. Since effective planning is not everyone’s strength, it is helpful to assign group leaders who will keep things organized. Leaders can help with things like deciding on activities, food spots, and tracking group expenses. Group leaders don’t have to make all of the decisions, but can be mediators and help make final decisions. They can also make reservations, handle bookings, and update the group on trip details. Having group leaders ensures that things get done swiftly and with as little hassle as possible.
Make Reservations and Accommodations for Group Travel
As before mentioned, making reservations ahead of time will give you more options on things to do before everything gets booked up. Especially if you’re traveling with a big group, making reservations will ensure that everyone can get in and no one will be separated. This includes making accommodations for stay. Depending on the hotel rooms get booked quickly, so book your stay as soon as possible. Also, try to plan some of your activities in advanced. Many hotels offer excursions and allow you to book them along with your stay. Making reservations for restaurants is also a great tip. Some restaurants require reservations for large groups because there may be no room for them as walk-ins. If you plan to eat at a specific restaurant but are unsure of policy, give them a call or visit their website to make a reservation online.
Consolidate & Centralize Group Travel Plans
This tip is perfect for those who love creating detailed itineraries. It may not be everyone’s cup-of-tea but, organization is key when planning a group trip. Itineraries are a great way to stay organized. Set up a central place where everyone can access the trip plans. This will allow everyone to have access to the details of the trip when they need them, ensuring that everyone is on the same page. Make sure trip plans are updated upon making changes to prevent confusion. Attendees won’t have to ask repeat questions because they can easily view trip plans in a shared document like Google Docs. I personally love Google Docs for this tip as it updates automatically.
Track Travel Bills and Expenses
Splitting expenses is bound to happen when traveling in a group so, keep track of shared expenses so amounts are divided fairly. If someone pays the bill at dinner, you want to make sure they’re reimbursed correctly. You can easily split bills with apps like Splitwise, this way everyone knows who owes who later. This is a great task for the trip’s group leader.
Build-in Free Time
When it comes right down to it, everyone won’t be interested in the same activities. Depending on the traveler, some would rather enjoy a drink by the pool, while others would rather go on an adventurous hike. You don’t have to do everything together just because you came together. Fit in some free time during your group trip to do activities you really want to do. Whether it’s trying a food spot or a thrilling sport activity, add it to your own itinerary and plan to meet with the rest of your group later. There may even be someone in your group who is interested in the same activity and would enjoy coming along with you. Taking someone with you can also double as a safety measure. For more travel safety tips you’ll want to know, check out this post.
Customizing your itinerary a bit gives you the opportunity to get the most out of the destination. When traveling in a group everyone has different interests and preferences. Having a free day planned into your group itinerary is a great way to allow everyone to do things they really want to do without boring anyone else.
These tips for planning a group trip are sure to give you the best chance at a successful group trip. If this post was helpful for you, please share it with someone it could also be helpful to!