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good place to take kids overseas?

So my husband is a pilot and has recently been hired by a major airline.  We are about to start getting our free family air travel.  SO EXCITED!!!!  The vacation options are now endless for us.  We really want to start taking yearly trips overseas to see the world.  I personally LOVE old history: Greece, Egypt, Rome, etc.  But, I want to take the kids to places that are appropriate for their age so they can appreciate what they are doing and seeing.  They are 8 and 5.  What are some good places to start out with? 

Re: good place to take kids overseas?

  • First, understand that you have to fly standby so you will only get on flights if there is available space.  I don't know how much you have travelled up to this point, but planes tend to be very full these days, especially during the busy summer travel season.

    Rather than focus on a particular location I'd suggest your husband look at routes that have openings and plan based around that.  You might not be able to plan in advance as availability fluctuates by the hour and you also need to be prepared to be flexible in the event you get bumped which can happen multiple times.

  • imo florence is more kid friendly than rome. same with venice. they both have more pedestrian areas than rome which is mostly motor traffic. and at 5 and 8 who really cares if they wont appreciate the history.wha thtey will do is expand their culture, see cool stuff and eat great food.
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  • I vote for Barcelona...lots to see and do here, and if all else fails, there's a beach here that you can take them to to give them a break from sightseeing ;)

    They also have a zoo which is awesome, and there is an aquarium too so some kid friendly things to do on top of museum stuff... 

  • I am fully aware that we will be on standby due to being non-rev and could be bumped for various reasons.  We have many close friends that are pilots as well and their families have learned the system well and know how to work around it all very well. 
  • Start out with a shorter flight and give them some adventure. Take them to Costa Rica! They can see monkeys, hit the beach, do canopy tours. It would be so much fun!
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  • i agree about the standby part. FIL is a pilot/captain for united (and has been for about 25 years or more) so we can also fly standby.

      however, even with his senority, and even with being very familiar with the non-rev system and the work-arounds.... even FIL gets bumped sometimes. its just the way it is now, with the airlines flying flights super full, and even overbooked.

     standby is also really difficult with kids, because the seats almost always aren't together. DH and i have flown standby a few times, and rarely ended up next to each other... and that was when we were only trying to get 2 seats on the plane, not 4. AND they really look down on you if you ask to switch with a full-fare passenger. one time, DH and i flew, and another passenger could tell we were together and offered to switch with us. the flight attendent was checking his list, knew we were standby, knew we weren't in the "right" seats... and said to us "you never ask a paying passenger to switch". so you can't really expect that people with switch with you so that you can sit with your kids.

    so, yeah, the non-rev system can be great, but i'm not sure i would count on it with a family of 4...

  • Took my then-5yr old to London and Paris last year and he had a great time in both places.  Super kid friendly.  Both have parks and lots of kid-friendly attractions.  DH and I are going to Greece in March (no kiddos), but I hear it's super crowded, probably not a good place for the younger ones.  Venice and Rome have both had really great reviews on parent travel blogs.  Have fun!!
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