Friday, April 4, 2014

Have you made reservations?

That's right, you! I've learned over the years that if you want to see your kids over the holidays (at a reasonable price), you better be actively involved in the reservation making! So if you haven't made those flight reservations for Thanksgiving, you're really pushing the proverbial envelope. I've just checked some websites and to travel Wed. through Sunday of Thanksgiving, fahgetaboutit.... The prices are going up. And going up a lot. And the availability is the pits, unless you want to travel on turkey day, which is a bummer. So if you want to see them over the holidays, get on the computer!
Negotiating these plans is an interesting process. When they're in college, you know when their breaks are and you assume that the holidays "belong to you:" they'll be coming home or meeting you somewhere. When they're in the working world, they only get two or three weeks vacation per year, and you may make the assumption that they of course want to spend their time off with you, but not necessarily....
Thus the negotiations begin! A couple of the added bennies we parents have is that we offer the "traditions they grew up with," we stroke the nostalgia key. Who knows, there's a real possibility we might pick up the tab for their travels? Why not sweeten the pot? We might even offer a "destination" vacation. But you better communicate with your kids about all of this: dates, times they're available to travel, etc. You don't want to experience their wrath if you made the wrong assumption. Assume nothing. Talk to them.
One thing is clear though, if you haven't made those reservations, you better get on it... they're not, I suppose they just assume that you're going to "take care of this" and may even pay for this. But speaking as a past retailer and not being able to go home for Christmas those first several years out of college, I have real empathy. It's a real bummer not to be with family over the holidays, so if you can help your Gen Yer avoid that, do! Make those reservations! It's a good gift!

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