Creating a Vacation Legacy for Generations

July 17, 2019

When you think of creating a legacy, what comes to mind? Leaving a business behind, financial resources for your family, proper estate planning, or maybe even passing on antique collectibles to your children. A legacy also means creating memories and relationships that exceed the generations. As you think about providing financial security for your family, also remember that spending quality time such as family vacations can turn a kinship into a long-lasting legacy.

In the U.S., a growing trend of creating family bonds are accomplished through multigenerational vacations, which incorporate family members of all age ranges. According to Virtuoso, a high-end traveling agency, multigenerational family vacations have been the top travel trend for the past five years. The data makes sense – many of our family members live around the globe, and instead of planning an event everyone is already accustomed to, planning a vacation is much more enticing. All family members can experience travel, relaxation, and quality time with each other. These bonds will exceed future, past, and present generations.

The travel industry has taken note of the growing trend. There are organizations that create specialized packages and itineraries for multigenerational vacations. Such organizations are: Road Scholar, Tauck Bridges Family Adventures, and Smithsonian Journeys, to name a few. For example, Road Scholar offers educational trips for grandparents and grandchildren that include visiting signature cities, national parks, archaeological tours, exploring sites of the Harry Potter films and so much more. These types of trips help bridge the gap of the eldest and youngest generations. Grandparents can teach art and history to their grandchildren, and grandchildren can bring wonder and imagination to their grandparents, as they navigate new terrain together.

Not all vacations can come from organizations. There are also all-inclusive resorts. All activities are set in the resort, so there will be no need for extra travel. Adults can lounge at the pool, while the children are swimming in it. All family members can involve themselves as a group or individually in other resort activities, such as kayaking, horseback riding, water sports, and golf.

With a vacation involving many family members, solving the logistics will take some analysis and detailed planning. We recommend these vacation planning tips for your multigenerational family:

  • Come up with 2 to 3 different vacation plans and put them up for a family vote
  • Let the family member with logistics experience handle the planning portion
  • Let the family member with the best financial skills take over the financing portion
  • Plan your dates at least six months in advance
  • Discuss the travel expenses with family members ahead of time
  • Consider adding 15 to 20 percent more to your planned spending budget. (Especially if you have children!)

Along with planning the “fun” stuff for your vacation, our law firm is here to advise you what else you need besides your suitcase. Below are items to keep in mind after you book your multi-generational vacation:

  • Know the Laws – traveling overseas can be a legal labyrinth. You need to know the local laws and customs that govern the places you will travel. Start by looking at the State Department’s website at Travel.State.Gov for a wealth of useful information. Also, do some independent research to stay abreast of any unusual laws in the country that you will be travelling to.
  • Power of Attorney and Health Care Surrogate – these documents are crucial in case of an emergency abroad or while traveling to another state. Prior to your trip, make sure you visit an estate planning attorney to draft these documents. In these documents, you will designate your “agent” or the person(s) who can make legal and financial decisions on your behalf in case you experience a medical emergency. While laws vary in different countries, the rule of comity should render your documents valid outside of the U.S.
  • Grandparents medical needs – be sure to keep a list of all prescription medications the older adults in your family are taking and a list of any items they may be allergic to. In case of emergency, you can readily hand this list to the treating facility.

There is much to consider in defining a legacy. Prior to embarking on your multigenerational family vacation, visit an estate planning attorney to make sure your estate plan is in order. We can help provide you peace of mind on your next adventure. Contact OC Estate and Elder Law at (954) 251-0332 or to get started with your free consultation. Our attorneys are fluent in English, Spanish and Russian.