Luxury Family Travel: Is It Worth It?
We just got back from the most luxurious Hawaiian family vacation evaaaaa. Like way, way more fancy that any other family vacation we’ve ever taken. To be honest, it was Daddy D’s 40th birthday, my birthday and our wedding anniversary, so we had a lot to celebrate… but this kind of luxury family travel has got me thinking about our family’s legacy and future travel plans.
We came home from our Hawaiian vacation full of memories that I cherish. Our week together was full of life! It was adventurous, it was physical, it was relaxing…
It was expensive. It was luxurious.
Is Luxury Family Travel Worth The Cost?
Do you see Daddy D up there with his surf and turf meal at the most expensive restaurant at the most expensive resort I have ever stayed at? It was delicious. BEYOND delicious. D ordered that meal saying, “I’d like to order my grown-man meal (he’s 40, ya’ll!) and please add a lobster tail.” I give him a pass, remembering that he now works in the high-end, specialty food industry, but I definitely rolled some eyes by his gluttony.
To top it off, I got a question on my Instagram account (are we friends on there, yet?!) inquiring if our vacation had been sponsored by a hotel. It was a fair question, since I enjoy working with brands and services that align with the vision of this blog (although those partnerships are always explicitly disclosed!). So I told her the truth: this Hawaiian family adventure – the most expensive and luxurious vacation my family has ever taken – was 100% sponsored by our hard earned dollar bills.
Travel press trips are super fun and wonderful experiences, but they’re still work. And I didn’t want any distractions on this trip celebrating the birth of our family legacy.
Lessons From Luxury Family Travel
Here are a few random thoughts on taking our first luxury vacation as a family of four:
“Luxury” is relative: I found this trip luxurious, but others may not. The resorts we stayed in were family-friendly (more on that soon!), so there were lots of kids around, but also concierge stations, spas and all sorts of the goodies that non-resort accommodations don’t offer. The towels were superior, the rooms were immaculate, every hotel staff employee was beyond helpful; you could buy excursions or sip free cucumber water in the lobby. There were water slides and free childcare. And the beaches… don’t get me started on the views and beaches! All the stars start to add up to major luxury (and $$$!) in my book.
Different stroke for different folks: As predicted, my husband can sit in luxury’s lap for the rest of our lives. He has fallen in LOVE with luxury. I might even be a little jealous of how much he adores all things luxury. He’s way more fancy than me, though. Give me a stellar location and a room with doors that lock (gotta stay safe out there!) and I’m good. Even if we had infinite money, I still don’t think I would lean towards this luxurious form of travel all the time because….
Luxury doesn’t feed my curious inspiration: We ate well, we relaxed like professionals, but when it comes to travel that inspires my curiosity, luxury feels a bit isolating. Again, my husband adores being removed from the chaos. Drop me in a local farmer’s or flea market, the center of town or middle of public transit and I can enjoy the rush.
There are levels to how amazing free can be: When you go luxury, even free is better. The free entertainment at our resorts were better than the entertainment we would have paid to see elsewhere. Isn’t that crazy? Who knew there were levels to how amazing free could be?!
Less Diversity: Hawaii is close to Los Angeles, which is pretty diverse, so even its luxurious resorts draws a crowd of brown and black families. That was pretty cool! Not to mention that Hawaiians are a beautiful collection of skin tones themselves, so we never felt out of place. But it got me thinking…. what were missing out on being trapped on our island of luxury? Certainly, you don’t get the diversity of people you would otherwise have by staying at a more moderate hotel. Also, would staying in high-end resorts throughout other parts of the country (say, Alabama) mean exposure to less diversity???
The things I think of when we’re spending way too much money….
To Luxury or not to luxury?
In the end, even with all its embarrassing luxuries, this was a dang good vacation. I haven’t seen my hard working husband this relaxed, this inhabited and free, this excited about the simple joys of life, in a long long time. Our luxurious Hawaiian family vacation was one for the record books. I would 100% do it again.
It was the best. Maybe ever.
Planning is already underway for the next family travel adventure! But do you go luxury or not? That is the question.