To Surprise or Not to Surprise – That is the Question

We’ve all seen the videos where Mom and Dad surprise the kids with a trip to Disney World or some other vacation and the reaction is far from what they expected.  Most of us don’t want that kind of reaction unless, of course, we want to be an internet sensation so here are a few tips and tricks I often suggest to clients who want to surprise their loved ones with a trip - whether they are young or young at heart.

Be sure they like surprises. If not, then springing a trip on them last minute may not be the best thing.  For some people, not being in control can cause anxiety. Others like to be part of the planning process just as much as the traveling itself.

Give them plenty of time to get ready to go.  A last minute trip may sound exciting, but it can cause anxiety for some. Packing and getting everything in order can be daunting.  They may also need to prepare mentally to travel.

Make sure they understand where you are going. If you are planning something like a Disney trip for your children - start watching some Disney movies and/or talking about the theme parks to get their interest peaked before you make the big announcement.

If you’re not sure how they will react, start planting “seeds”If you are taking a cruise to Alaska, maybe have crab legs one night and mention how fabulous they must be in Alaska.  Thinking about a surprise trip to Italy?  Rent a movie set in Italy like the Italian Job or Eat, Pray, Love to get in the spirit.

Find out where they want to go. Start discreetly asking about their dream vacation, maybe when you see something on TV, in a book, or on YouTube. Planning the trip of your dreams is not a gift if that is not on your partner’s bucket list.

Find out when they can go. If you can get a hold of your partner’s boss to “ask” for the time off, you can go ahead and get that vacation in the books.  If not you may have to give the vacation with a date to be determined - but make sure that date gets scheduled quickly.

Sara is the owner of Platinum Travel.  She customizes seamless, stress free vacations for people who want to see the world and all things Disney.  She can also help you with planning the "surprise."

She also owns Autism Friendly Vacations where she helps families who have a member on the Autism spectrum get the vacation they deserve. Visit for more information.

You can reach her at 414-377-8611 or to start planning your vacation today,

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