Family Vacation Tips

How To Take A Free Family Vacation

[fa icon="calendar"] Aug 13, 2015 11:00:00 AM / by Sally Black

Sally Black

Free family VacationDo you have a passion for travel and adventure?

Ever dream of taking your kids to Hawaii, Rome or the crystal blue waters of the Caribbean?  

Good news...you don't need to wait until you win the powerball, rob a bank, sit thru hours timeshare brainwashing or get suckered into some shadey pyramid scheme to turn your dreams into reality. I'm talking about a real, legit, legal ways to take FREE family vacations year after year.

The power is all in the numbers baby- Let me explain.

The secret to taking free vacations year after year is called group travel. The common idea of group travel might be for a business meeting or perhaps a destination wedding. Most people have never wrapped their heads around this concept before but once it's explained to them, they quickly understand the powerful impact it can have on their own personal vacation plans.

Before we dive into all the details, please bear in mind this is a very complicated subject. Each and every hotel, cruiseline, airline, transportation company and attraction all have unique rules and fine print when it comes to group travel. To create a group vacation package several of these different travel components will need to be combined. For these reasons, you'll really want (and need) to partner with an experienced travel agent who can help you over the hurdles and offer you many other professional benefits.

Step One - You become a group leader: Somebody needs to take the lead so why not you! The job requirements are a passion for travel, an upbeat optimistic attitude, good follow thru and lots of friends. it's your job to work with your travel agent make all the arrangements. You choose the itinerary, travel dates and details - basically you plan the vacation that YOU and your family want to enjoy.  You do need to make the necessary credit card deposits just like you would be booking a typical vacation for yourself.

Step Two - Invite Everyone You know - You may not even realize it but you probably know at least 600 people. That's considered to be the average for most folks. Between family, friends, neighbors, school, sports, business colleagues, not to mention social media - you probably know more people than you even realize.

Step Three - You Travel FREE -Here are some example of how magic happens....

Caribbean All Inclusive Resort XYZ in  costs $3,300 for a family of four for their 7 night summer vacation. This rate includes gourment meals, all drinks (including alcohol), resort activities, nightly entertaiment and even free child care at the kids club and tips! This same resort offers groups 1 free room for every 5 rooms booked...Invite 5 families to share your fun and your family stays for free!

That 10 night Alaska Cruise/tour you've been dreaming about will cost your family of four $8163 to stay in that balcony cabin. The cost breaks out to $2750 per adult and $1300 for each of your teens.  Your cruise ship offers 1 free adult passenger for every 16 adult passengers sailing....so for every 8 cabins, one person goes free.  Invite 50 people and your Alaska cruise dream is now a reality.

Your family's dream trip to Paris will cost $18,000 for your family of three. Find six other people to join you and save $6000. Get 15 people and save $9000. Get 24 people to join your family is free.

Your job is to get everyone excited about having a fun filled vacation and sharing these wonderful life changing experiences together with you and your family. Depending on the exact type of trip and rules involved, you will be reimbursed either at the time final payment is due or 30 days after your vacation.

Once you recruit your group, all you have to do is have fun on your vacation.  Your agent will make sure you have travel professionals at the ready every step of the way. Of course your travel agent partner is as close as a click, call or text.  If your group is larger than 50 it's a good idea to have your agent accompany your group to act as facilitator, host and hand holder to insure VIP treatment for all of your guests.

Obviously the goal is to sell enough space to cover the cost of your own family's vacation but please know, The Bigger Your Group - The More You Earn!  I've seen many of these groups become profitable money making ventures for group leaders in addition to the free vacation opportunties they offer families. Also with a large group, your travel agent has more leverage to negotiate more perks like parties, upgrades and private sightseeing.

REMEMBER- Additional funds can be used not only for your own profit, but as fundraisers for schools, sports teams and any other non profit organization. Fundraising efforts can mean more people not only inclince to support a great cause but remember, you still get your free vacation too!

So let's see....

  • free vacation-check.
  • A way to earn additional income - check.
  • You become a hero to your guests - checkmate!

We hear it time after time, so many parents lead such hectic busy lives that they deperately need a vacation but don't even have the time or brainpower to plan one for themselves.  By you becoming a leader and handling all the thinking, it boils down to a simple Yes or No decision for them.  We can also help empower your guests to earn their own free vacations too - now that would turn you into a down right Travel Super hero!

It's your travel agent's job to handle all the logistics, trouble-shooting, fine print and answer travel questions. Again this is a great deal of work. When dealing with a large group this can quickly turn into a full time job so yet another reason why you want an experienced travel agent as your partner.  If done properly, your travel agent does all the work and you take all the glory (and the free vacation!)

So hopefully by now we have sparked your attention. No doubt the wheels in your brain are spinning with all the amazing possibilities. Awesome!  We knew you'd get it!

But before you get too carried away, there are a few important facts that you should understand. These can mean all the difference between your free dream vacation and another staycation.....

  • Plan your group at least 1 year in advance - There are a LONG list of reasons why this is an excellent piece of advice so trust us on this one and save us some typing.
  • Make your vacation at least 7 days long- This amount of vacation offers a better value for your travel dollars spent compared to shorter stays. It also gives people the time necessary to properly relax into the vacation mindset, create camaraderie and simply enjoy themselves.
  • Avoid December Holiday and Spring Break weeks - Flights, resorts & cruise ships are jammed packed these weeks. Prices jump 50-70% thanks to supply and demand. Sure, you need to travel when the kids are out of school but there are much better times to go. You'll find deals, rates and even additional perks for your group during summer vacation and off peak times of the year for the destination you select.
  • Think Big - Invite everyone! Often group leaders are pleasantly surprised by who ultimately travels with them.  If you're hairdresser decides to come along it doesn't mean they have to spend 24/7 with your kids. If you're sister in law gets on your nerves we can make sure she's at the other end of a ship that holds 4000 people. Remember you don't all have to fly from the same airport, eat dinner together every night or share everything together, unless that's what you want.
  • Make it an Unshoppable event - Work with a travel agent who is also an experienced event planner. They can help you create a theme or vacation package features like private parties or excursions that make your group unique so that friends you invite won't be able to buy this experience from anywhere else online
  • Build those bonds - Unique experiences and memories are the glue that bonds people together. Again your agent will be able to offer ideas and ways to get everyone else committed to YOUR free family vacations year after year. You want to be sure that your itinerary offers enjoyable activities for people of all ages as well as a good balance of time together and apart.
  • This is not a Democracy - For groups to be successful, Group leaders MUST lead. If you put trip suggestions or travel dates up for a vote you'll get a million different suggestions and no action. You'll also run the risk of hurting some feelings. To get people a lot of people involved and on board to travel with you the question needs to be "will you be able to join us for this fun vacation...YES or NO"?. A personal "exclusive" invite, makes them feel like a VIP and not a decision maker.
  • You'll need to hustle - You are the shepherd of your own flock. It's up to you to "herd", gather, connect, invite, excite, remind, nudge  and get your followers to follow you.  Your travel agent can help you stir up the excitement with marketing materials, online webinars, local events and more depending on the situation.
  • You have to "pay to play"- Airlines, cruise lines and hotels are not going to hold prices and space simply because you promise to get a bunch of people together.  Group Leader MUST to put your money where your mouth is.  This means Group leaders  will need to use their own credit cards to put down a deposit to hold space for their group. The amount of this deposit will vary according to the size and type of vacation event you are planning.   As each guest signs up and eventually pays for their own trips, money is allocated back to the group leader (along with freebies and any other money that you've earned). 
  • Play by the Rules -Most vacation companies will give you a certain amount of time to get your group guests signed up and will allow you to "return" any unused space you've paid to hold without penalties before a certain deadline date. This means you'll get any deposit money back on unsold space that you had on hold. If space isn't returned on time, you will be responsible to pay for it.  Your travel agent will be there to help insure you make your deadlines and help you avoid any other potential potholes.

Are you ready to take the next step?  Stop day-dreaming and wishing and start turning your travel dreams into reality for your family.  Talk to our travel agents and see if you have what it takes to become the next big Group Travel Leader and travel the world with your family for free.

I Want To Be A Group Leader

 

 

Topics: family group travel, Affordable Family Vacations

Sally Black

Written by Sally Black

Sally is the Founder of Vacationkids.com Travel Agency and author of the book "Fearless Family Vacations". She is also the Director of Travel Agent Initiatives and Training at The Family Travel Association.