Bring another adult if you are traveling with a kid
My husband and I are on a trip to Australia and New Zealand for 3 weeks with out 1 year old boy. This time we really felt a need for another adult as bed time and naps would trump going out for a nice dinner by the water.
Going on a longer trip with just your family is great, amazing and also crowded. It’s possible that you will want to have some adult time and stay up later then your kid. Anytime we tried to push bedtime to a later time we had a fussy baby at the restaurant. So if you can, definitely bribe someone to come along with you!
Don’t leave souvenir shopping for the last day
Like most tourists, I’m sure you would want to do some souvenir shopping and bring things back for yourself or for your family and friends. I find it simpler and easier to get all the shopping done before your last day on vacation. First of all, if you find something you love, just buy it, it may not be available at another spot and you won’t have to go back to get it. Second, find from the locals where the market is with all the small trinkets that’s away from the touristy spot. They will have the best prices and best bang for your buck.
Ask Airbnb host, or your hotel, to check in early
Our family has traveled via Airbnb on 3 continents, 4 countries and so many different apartments. We’ve learned a lot from using Airbnb and I wrote about it here.
I would definitely recommend staying via Airbnb, it’s cheaper, better prices, laundry available, and often you can stay in a hotel using Airbnb with better prices (we’ve done this also). A lot of hotels and apartments won’t let you check in until 2-3 pm, and most of the time when we asked to check in early or at least leave our bags there early, they were very accommodating.
Don’t land anywhere in the middle of the night
So much to be said about this one, and unfortunately this lesson we learned the hard way. Unless you are staying next to the airport, meaning walking distance, or you have someone picking you up.
Have a flexible plan
It’s so important to have a list of what you want to do, when you want to do it, but with a family, or small kid(s) it can change, so I find it helpful to be flexible and mentally open to change itinerary if needed. When you go into your vacation with no expectations, everything will be amazing and better then you thought it would be.
Also, have a plan and at least 2 day itinerary booked and planned. We’ve been rained on and had to be super flexible often on this trip. We were still able to enjoy our time and have a great trip despite all the challenges and detours.
Spend more time at the beach
The beach in Australia and in New Zealand is nothing like I’ve ever seen. It’s incredible and our regret is not staying at the beach longer while we were around Sydney.