Multi-generational travel is high on the list of travel trends. As families become more dispersed, multi-generational travel offers the opportunity for inter-generational families to create life-long memories together and celebrate their connection.

Beyond mashing up your travel plans to fit everyone from babies, teens, parents, grandparents and even pets (just kidding, that’s multi-species travel!), what exactly is multi-generational travel and how will it affect your next trip? 

But why do we do it – so that families can spend uninterrupted quality time together. To top this is a desire to foster closer family ties and ever-lasting memories among different generations in a relaxing and entertaining environment away from home.

Gone are those days when people used to book an all-inclusive trip to be away from the extended family.

According to studies, 33-40% of the $270 billion in leisure travel is multi-generational. Virtuoso, an international travel agency network specializing in luxury and experiential travel, found that the top travel trend is multi-generational travel.

Euromonitor International’s 2018 Global Consumer Trends report also indicated that the rise of multi-generational travel “is in part about finances and boomer parents helping their cash-strapped kids.

Safari company African Travel, for example, reports a 20% increase in Safari bookings from last year, with 40% of trips arranged and paid for by grandparents to help make a bucket-list experience possible for their families.

According to a survey, 27% of US adults have travelled with three or more generations of their family in the past year, and this trend is not limited to the US. In the UK, a survey found that 56% of British grandparents have taken a multi-generational trip in the past five years, and 30% plan to take one in the future.

The benefits of this scale of family travel stretch through every generation, especially for children who can enhance their education and social skills as they receive hands-on learning from more experienced generations.

Here are some tips on how to make sure grandparents, parents and grandchildren all have a great time.

It’s a family affair

As the trend towards multi-generational travel continues to grow, the industry must continue to innovate and adapt to meet the changing needs and expectations of families. By doing so, they can provide an exceptional vacation experience that families will cherish for years. 

Family-friendly destinations

The top destinations for family trips appear to be Italy, Mexico, South Africa, Costa Rica, and Turks & Caicos. Further, in a recent survey conducted by, nearly seven in ten respondents said their multi-generational trips usually took place outside of the UK. Spain was the most popular foreign destination, accounting for 43% of all European travel. The South West of England was home to almost a third of all UK visits.

Of course, when considering 2-3 generational groups within one trip, you’re dealing with people of different ages, abilities, and interests. As such, these travelers are sure to select destinations that they perceive to have a ‘little something for everyone’ to enjoy while abroad.

This is an industry-wide trend as the boomer generation retires and are living longer and staying more active than the generations before them. These trips end up being quite luxurious – there are more people so the family can stay in exclusive and private villas or suites at a reasonable per person price.

What does the perfect multi-generational trip look like?

Let’s break it down a little bit further. Studies show that Gen Z travelers value unique, adventure experiences such as exploring and trying new things more than anything else. Baby boomers are also interested in ‘bucket-list’ travel, while also exhibiting a penchant for more traditional travel experiences (such as sightseeing or touring) and opportunities to relax and unwind. Millennials and Gen X, on the other hand, seem to seek out relaxation and local experiences, with 86% stating they would rather experience a new culture, compared to 44% who prefer to party or 28% who prefer to shop. Even further, 77% of multigenerational trips are associated with a life event (milestone birthday or anniversary, family reunion, etc.).

 Many hotels around the globe are rising to this occasion, finding creative ways to attract and engage with multigenerational groups. This can include specialized packages and incentives with perks and experiences catered to different groups within the family, unique amenities, and flexible accommodation styles. In a recent Skift report, AFAR Editor Jen Murphy highlighted the Nantucket Hotel in Nantucket, Massachusetts as an impressive multigenerational property because of its flexible layout and range of accommodations.

Acqualina Resort and Spa on The Beach in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, is another great example, as they created an app specifically to cater to multigenerational groups. The app is utilized to let guests know how the floor plans are laid out to accommodate all of their requests from bedding preferences to living areas for the family to enjoy. It also lets them know about unique, family-oriented activities like beach Olympics and search the app based on categories: family accommodation; on-property activities; hotel restaurants; excursions, and featured recommendations

Something for everyone to do

Those offering travel ideas to support the trend are providing options like safaris, city tours, beach holidays and cruises as the ideal way for inter-generational families to get together and celebrate their connection.

Since you’ll be travelling with multiple generations, you’ll want to find something that will suit everyone’s fitness and activity level. At Cutty Sark, you can entrust your kids to the care of our childminders in the play centres while you enjoy solo downtime in the gym or spa. We also have on-site restaurants ideal for family dining or take advantage of the complimentary shuttle service that will drop you off within a certain radius from your accommodation and enjoy a day out with your family.  

Road trips throughout the country have become somewhat of a local heritage. Our facilities include a variety of activities to keep every member of your family entertained, from the little ones to the seniors, making them perfect for multi-generational get-togethers.

Not everyone travels in this way for the same reasons. Some travel to explore family roots or distant family connections, others because it is a far nicer experience than Skype could ever offer. And family travel is not always defined as two or three generations of a nuclear family.