Recommend March 2018 - 33

Left: Adventures by
Disney takes families
to visit Monet's Garden.
This photo: Goway offers
itineraries to Iceland.

Family Travel:
A Trio of Choices
Carla Hunt

Why specialize in families? Rainer
Jenns, president of the Family Travel
Association-a coalition of travel suppliers,
destinations, media influencers and travel
agents-has some of the answers. According
to Jenns, in the FTA's recent survey of
key travel industry players, 87 percent of
respondents believe that the family travel
market sector will grow robustly (over
8 percent) or moderately (4-8 percent)
within the next five years, "creating a major
opportunity for the travel industry." Backing
up this optimistic outlook, he listed the
leading factors that study participants gave
for this growth:
■ Consumer interest in spending quality
time traveling together as a family
(71.2 percent)
■ Parents' focus on exposing children to new
destinations and cultures (52.4 percent)
■ Expanding range of family travel products
being offered by the industry (38.4 percent)
■ Grandparents' wish to create multi-gen
family experiences (36 percent)
The survey also shows that, while among
international destinations the Caribbean/
Central America region is the most popular
for family travel (39.5 percent), Europe, at
39.4 percent, is a mere step behind.

Families Go Touring
When families go touring with Goway, some
custom tailoring is the rule of the road with
their continent-wide choice of vacation

ideas. This year, Ireland, Italy and Iceland
are the top three destinations with Goway,
whose most popular and geared-to-families
package is the 9-day Elegant Ireland Self
Drive: Dublin to Galway. It's a set routing
that explores the Emerald Isle in style at a
family's own pace, traveling from Dublin
to Waterford to Limerick, the Cliffs of
Moher, and staying in four- and five-star
accommodations. Newcomer destination
Iceland offers families the 9-day escorted
Iceland Complete Coach Tour or a 10-day
Iceland Complete Self-Drive, traveling along
the famous Ring Road. Both come with
liberal doses of hot springs and glacial rivers,
bubbly mud pools and ice caves, national
parks and a lively capital.

Families Go Active
The hot news in family travel comes in
European biking tours, now offered with
e-bikes that permit riders of lesser ability to
go farther and faster-uphill as well as down,
making it more likely for everyone to pedal
the whole course together. Reserve early, for
at the moment, demand is outpacing supply.
At Austin Adventures, well known as
one of the original purveyors of multisport
travel in North America, the hot ticket
this year is a roster of Europe Multisport
Adventures-Beyond Bike Touring, which
introduces Americans to new horizons of
coastal waters and lakes for kayaking, alpine
regions for hiking, cultural activities such

as futuristic greenhouses in Holland, organic
wine producers in France, places showcasing
German precision and engineering, local craft
breweries in Belgium, and Italian kitchens
making homemade pasta. Of course, active
travelers take time out to observe how the
French slice their cheese, and how Germans
pour their beer. These new adventures come
with designated family-focused departures.

Families Afloat
If you thought that river cruising was only the
province of retirees and baby boomers, think
again, for this increasingly popular vacation
niche has opened up wide to families, with
river cruise lines offering special sailings and
activities appealing to kids of all ages.
If one judges by early sellout conditions,
Adventures by Disney is the superstar of
Europe's family tour/cruise inventory. A
Disney team sails with the AmaWaterways
ships to lead kids' activities and excursions,
which are friendly for kids ages 6 and up. Next
year, Adventures by Disney will expand its
river horizons with a new 10-day Seine River
cruise that combines a 2-night stay in Paris
with a 7-night sailing, visiting destinations
such as Conflans-Sainte-Honorine and Vernon
along the way. Highlights of this itinerary
include interactive culinary experiences,
guided tours of Paris, immersive local
experiences, castle visits, and more. ■
We've got even more FAMILY-FRIENDLY


Contact Information
Adventures by Disney:
Austin Adventures:
Goway Travel:
march 2018 33


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