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Author: gaynell

Joined: 8/12/2010
Posts: 141
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2005

January 16, 2013

An idea has been kicking around in my head for a while, and I thought I'd see if anyone else is interested in this.  What if OAT/GCT designated one departure a year of each trip as a "family departure?"  Many people have mentioned on this forum that they have brought along or traveled with a teen or twenty-something grandchild, and we would like to have an opportunity to do a trip like that.

People who prefer not to ttravel with kids could avoid that departure and sign up for another date.  Those who think it sounds fun and interesting could participate. The young people would enjoy having other young people to hang out with, and the parents, grandparents or aunts and uncles would get the chance to show them the world!

Is there anyone else out there who would be interested in a plan like this?

Author: wattsed

Joined: 3/30/2010
Posts: 138
Trips Taken: 3
Countries Visited:

All seven continents, 113 countries and all states except Hawaii and Idaho.Plus some interesting places that are not countries such as The zores, Falkland Islands, South Georgia, etc.

Traveler Since: 2010

January 16, 2013

Back when my daughter was 16 (she is 50 now) my Mother, her Grandmother, took her on a trip to Europe and that got her interested in travel and a desire to see the world...She was the only teen on that trip and I am sure it would have been nice for her  to have had someone her own age on the trip also, even though the "older"people more or less "adopted" her as she was able to help everyone with foriegn money and exchange rates since each country back then had their own currency...That trip, frankly, was also what got me interested in travel and now she will do a trip somewhere and come back all excited and will say, "Dad, this is a trip (or place) you have just got to see!"    Petra, Antarctica, Iguassau Falls, Victoria Falls and  Angkor Wat are just a few examples...

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 241
Trips Taken: 11
Traveler Since: 1995

January 16, 2013

I think GCT did do somethng like this a few years back, I think a river cruise.  Not sure the outcome but I agree that something exclusive for "family with children" type trip, and anyone else who doesn't mind youngsters, could go if they wanted. 

You might talk with some of the "veteran" consultants at GCT, like Maggie, or Dan Lubchansky (he's in charge of Travel Relations-GCT).  Or suggest to one of them at one of the traveler's appreciation convention in your city.  (GCT is coming to Tucson/Phoenix/Nevada in February). 



Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

January 16, 2013

GCT does allow family groups, but I believe they limit the children to age 12 or 13 at the youngest.  When I took the Russia Revealed trip in 2010, there was a family group with a girl of about 12 or 13 and she seemed to be having a wonderful time.  But she also seemed to be quite mature.

Would you suggest a change in the focus of the tours?  Right now, they are quite educational, and younger children might be bored.  Would you suggest a ratio of the number of children to the number of adults?  There's a lot to consider in something like this.

Author: gaynell

Joined: 8/12/2010
Posts: 141
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2005

January 16, 2013

The twelve and up age range seems reasonable to me. Most twelve year olds are old enough to behave iin public, listen to the program director, and eat nicely in the dining room.  (I am thinking of the European river cruises here).  If a teenager didn't want to attend every lecture, class, etc., he or she could always watch the scenery or find other activities.  I don't think the program would necessarily have to be adapted for that middle school age range, and it certainly wouldn't need any adjusting for the high school or college age group.

Ideally you would want one adult for each child attending, but there might be exceptions to that...a grandmother taking two grandchildren, for instance. Some individual attention to room assignments would probably be necessary during the booking phase, so that the rooms of a party would be across from or next to one another. And the adults of the party would have to understand from the beginning that they alone would be responsible for the "care and feeding" of their young companions.......not fair to put that on the program director.

We have taken a ten year old to Egypt successfully, kids eight to sixteen on an African safari,  kids twelve to twenty to South America, and kids eight and up to Europe. Great experiences, and wonderful for their education!  Does anyone else have younger family members who might be invited along for a trip like this?

Author: suepoor1234

Joined: 7/20/2011
Posts: 38
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

All the states except Hawaii; east and west Canada, all of Western Europe(except Iceland and Greenland); the Baltics and Scandanavia; Belarus, Poland, Ukraine; Russia; Turkey, Jordan and Israel; China, Mongolia, and Tibet; Egypt, Morocco, Tanzania; Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatamala, El Salvador; Ecuador, Galapagos Islands, Peru, Argentina; Australia and New Zealand; Antarctica.

Traveler Since: 2007

January 17, 2013

After flying with me from the age of 6, my son was flying as an unaccompanied minor at age 8 to visit his grandparents 500 miles away.  We went through lots of training with "what if?" play acting, so he was prepared to deal with that sort of travel.  He also started traveling with me internationally when he was 9.  He was never a behavior/discipline problem on a tour.  He had (as we say in this part of Texas ) "home training."  I cannot say the same for a few adults on some trips. 

Author: grandcircle

Joined: 3/5/2010
Posts: 271
Trips Taken: 0

January 17, 2013

Hello Everybody -

Thank you for your suggestion about "family tours" - this will be passed along to our Planning Department.

In the meantime, if you like to take a younger family member on one of our trips, the minimum age for participation is 12 years old.  Any family member under the age of 18 must share a room or cabin with an adult.

Kind Regards,


GCCL/GCT Forum Moderator

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