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Soraya DeMattia

New York, New York Travel Agent

Multigenerational and Family Travel Advisor

When planning a multigenerational trip, I seek out activities and accommodations that will satisfy the needs of everyone in the group, taking into consideration the ages, preferences, and abilities of each traveler.

Each family group also has its own interpersonal dynamics. Some families want a lot of togetherness; others need more separation. It is also helpful to me to know the deep interests of each traveler so I can find ways for everyone to feel engaged and know that their wishes are being taken into consideration.

I send families to destinations around the world, tailoring itineraries to the ages of the travelers. In the Greek Islands, for example, everyone can enjoy the beaches, while teenagers and young adults often love the active nightlife only available on some islands. And in cities such as Paris and London, I often suggest cooking classes and behind-the-scenes excursions that everyone can share.

All-inclusive resorts work well for many multi-gen family trips. I have been planning an annual Caribbean getaway to Beaches of Turks and Caicos for one family for more than 20 years. It started with the parents and their children and grew to include spouses and then grandchildren. Now, there are 22 in the group.

Like many all-inclusive resorts, Beaches has activities for every age group from tots and tweens to those hard-to-please teen years. The kids have grown up going there and I always make sure they have their favorite rooms, all in a row, in the same building with connecting rooms for parents with small kids. That lets everyone vacation together while giving each family has a feeling of independence.

Villas can be great for families. I work with a reliable company that stands behind the quality of their villas around the world and can arrange wonderful activities and services like a driver and guide and a chef.

On the other hand, a stand-alone villa in the countryside may not have enough to keep everyone happy. When interests are too divergent, it may be hard to strike the balance between everyone running off in different directions and spending quality time together.

One solution can be a villa that is on a resort complex. That allows everyone to relax around their private pool and living area and dine together while enjoying the amenities of the larger resort at their doorstep so they can go off in small groups to go snorkeling, catch a show or join a teen activity.

I like to set the expectation that the entire group does not need to be together all the time. On a cruise, some of the family may want to visit a museum while others take off on a hike or zip-lining adventure. Then, they can all regroup and share their day’s experiences over dinner.

I recently planned a 50th-anniversary cruise to Bermuda, where I set up some private excursions for the group including a catamaran sail and reserved an alcove of tables in the dining room for their meals.

Planning multigenerational trips is extremely gratifying because these trips reinforce family bonds through unique shared memories.

Whether it is a celebration for a special occasion or an annual family gathering, I would love to put my experience in multigenerational family vacation planning to work in planning a joyful and memorable gathering for your family.

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