Where’s your next family vacation? After all the planning you’ve done, you want to enjoy your trip and share the experiences with your family. You can’t do that when everyone has their noise in their phone. Today I want to talk about setting limits on your family’s digital devices.
Your family vacation is about creating memories together, not scrolling endlessly through your phone.
Make a Plan to Reduce Tech Use
Like with anything, you can’t succeed without a plan. Gather the family together and create a plan to set limits. Reduce the amount of time everyone is allowed to be on their phones, set limits in your phone settings, and turn off notifications.
Alamo Rent A Car created this ready-made pledge template for you and your family to use. Print it off and fill in the blanks. You can also use it to inspire your family to create your own plan of action and set limits on digital devices this summer. Get the printable PDF here.
Pack Travel Games
Now that you’ve set limits, how do you get everyone from going through tech withdrawal? You may laugh, but THIS IS A THING! I know from personal experience that I’ve suffered from it. I had no cellular service or WiFi in Costa Rica and my thumbs were twitching because they didn’t know what to do.
Pack travel games to distract and entertain the family. Favorites in our house are card games, travel checkers, tangrams, trivia games, and backseat bingo. The key is to bring a wide variety of games for everyone. If you think you’ve packed too many, bring a few more.
Let Others Know You are ON VACATION
For those that work outside the home, we let our co-workers know when we are going on vacation. Then they know not to expect us in the office. Do the same with friends, family, and the digital world. Before you leave, post to social media that you are on vacation and won’t be online. If you are concerned about safety, just say you are signing off for a bit and if there is an emergency they should call. This really helps reduce the FOMO in the digital world. Everything will be there when you get back and you can focus on your family.
Travel Somewhere With NO Cellular Signal
Unplug and head outdoors. You can’t get online when you have no signal. We found this to be true in Yellowstone National Park. At the lodge there was service, but as we got to walking and hiking nearby, there were zero bars. So phones went down and we started to have more fun.
Hold Each Other Accountable
Make the pledge to reduce and limit tech use and stay true to it while on vacation. Allow the kids to call you out if you start to reach for that phone and vice versa. If you need to set up penalties for exceeding limits, set that up. It could be $1 a minute for any overage, reduction in privileges, etc. As an additional reminder, use a custom phone lock-screen wallpaper. The three above were created by Alamo Rent A Car as part of their Unplugged Family Vacation Toolkit. Take a look at those and get additional ideas.
Limiting digital device usage while on vacation helps your family eliminate distractions and make memories together. Instead of posting, liking, graming, tweeting, etc. with people a world away, have a conversation with the person across the table from you. Follow these tips and connect with your kids again. Vacations are fun but you have to look up from your phone to enjoy them.