I don’t know about you, but I have trouble even watching a kissing scene on TV if my dad is in the room.
I also wouldn’t eat ribs on a first date, get drunk in front of my mother-in-law, wear a short halter dress to a meeting with the CEO or ugly underwear to the gynecologist.
There are just certain things that we don’t do around certain people and for very good reasons. So, why then do people forget to apply this logic to their holidays?
How much fun would it be to go on a girls cruise with Chippendale entertainment, special toys parties and raucous truth or dare games… with your future mother-in-law?
Chances are that her finding out about that night, with that many shooters and that certain Sharks player is just not a good idea.
Most of us use a holiday as a way to escape the family or the mother-in-law, so we are pretty clued up on this subject. But it never hurts to take a quick refresher course on the art of avoiding a mini drama on our hard-earned vacations.
Trips to avoid… with your mom
I asked one of my friends what type of trip he would avoid taking with his mother and the answer was simple – any holiday during which you intend to relax.
Another friend asked to take the money instead.
Someone else commented that you should never go on holiday with her mom if you intend to sleep past 7am and are not a fan of the “wakey wakey song”.
If it was my mom, I would have to avoid any trip to a town that has been around for more than a day. Otherwise I would be subjected to every museum, gallery and stately home there was. (What is a stately home anyway?)
So apparently what to avoid depends completely on your particular mom.
The alternative: Instead of worrying what kind of holiday would be testing with your mom, why not plan a trip that you know would be a hit with you both? Heading to a new place like Zambia or Mauritius is exciting and new for you both, meaning you can explore together.
Each GoTravel24 package to these destinations also ensures that you are slap bang in the middle of the action. So if you need to sleep in, there will be plenty for your mom to do until the sun rises sufficiently to get you out of bed.
Trips to avoid… with your dad
I think avoiding the red light district in Amsterdam with your dad pretty much goes without saying here (or at least we hope so). So we’ll take a more local angle and suggest that you think about what your dad is like before you trek across South Africa.
Think about it, if your dad is outdoorsy and believes that starting a fire with matches is cheating, then he is probably not going to be thrilled with a trip to Sun City.
If your dad is anything like mine, then a holiday where the main attraction is a shopping mall is also not going to go down well. There is nothing worse than having a sulky man in tow and nothings brings out that side in a dad like a changing room.
The alternative: Whether it’s screaming from the sidelines of a rugby field or practicing pirouettes, dads love to get involved with their kids.
Dads will jump at the chance to be able to teach you something again or hold your hand when you get scared. And who cares if you chicken out or fall over? It’s just your daddy after all.
Trips to avoid… with your new girlfriend
There are so many options for romantic getaways and holidays for couples that it can be easy to get carried away and for things to go wrong. For many reasons, couples often decide to go on adventure holidays together. You could want to share your interests with a new partner or simply be trying to impress with your bravery. But broken bones, flying off a mountain bike, sky diving to your death are never usually a good look. The kind of bonding you are looking to do is not usually done best from twin hospital beds.
Besides the chance at irreparably damaging your partner and your chances at a second date, adventure trips can backfire in another way. The way to impress a girl is not by showing off on a mountain bike and crashing into a tree that just “appeared out of nowhere”.
Honestly, we’d just think you’re being stupid.
Or what happens if you get all hooked up to the bungee jumping equipment and then you chicken out? That is not exactly impressive either.
You also have no idea how she is going to react in certain situations. Chances are that she didn’t disclose her comical lack of coordination and balance on your first date. So tying her up behind a boat with a wooden plank attached to her feet is not going to endear you to her. Take it from me (yes, I fell over every time) you are just going to embarrass her and ensure that your first holiday away is your last.
The alternative: If you are looking for something different to do to impress a girl, why not try a cruise? It can almost be guaranteed that this is something she hasn’t done meaning you score ingenuity points and there are lots of fun activities on board that all come with lifeboat and trained staff safety.
Trips to avoid… with your new boyfriend
A weekend away with a new girlfriend usually means one thing… (please don’t make me say it). So as long as there is a bed involved, new boyfriends are usually happy.
But there are some trips that can put a dampener on your lust, I mean love.
There are things that women (no stereotypes here) find incredibly romantic, but can leave a newly captured man trembling. While you might find an overnight train trip across South Africa incredibly Mills & Boon and dreamy, in reality it means being stuck in one small cabin with the same person for a very long time.
While you could envision cuddling all day while the rain patters on the windows, he probably sees a cage with nowhere for him to go to the loo out of earshot.
Another gem of a trip to avoid (I had no idea people actually do this) is a themed tour. You might be an avid Shakespeare lover and adore the idea of dressing up in the garb, talking all fancy and taking a boat trip around Cape Town harbour. Chances are that your new boyfriend doesn’t. Remember, Shakespeare involved tights and wigs. There are better ways to share your interests with your new partner without subjecting them to something that will probably embarrass them, make you look a little odd and put them amongst, um, interesting company.
The alternative: The best way to get a romantic weekend with your new man is to compromise a tad (just a tad, relax). Try a city break somewhere there is something cool and manly happening at the time. Think Sharks vs Stormers or A1 Grand Prix. Once you have wowed him with how cool you are, spending the rest of the weekend in bed is guaranteed. Throw a cool city hotel into the mix and you are both happy.
Trips to avoid… with your in-laws
This entirely depends on your in-laws of course. I have a friend who laughed at this question and called her mom-in-law “an awesome party animal”. So, I’ll close my eyes while you all maim her and offer some advice anyway.
Remember how it irks you when you partner back seat drives? Well, imagine how super annoying it would be coming from your in-laws?
Taking a self-drive family safari trip is one holiday I would not recommend to take with your extended family. It involves long days spent in the car, arguments over the air con and awkward moments when you run out of conversation. No matter how good your relationship is with your in-laws, being stuck in a car together is testing.
Before you know it you are arguing over that being an eland or a kudu, whether or not her son really likes broccoli, whatever happened to that lovely Shelley girl he dated in high school and how you wear too much make up for a safari.
The alternative: Rather opt for a safari package from GoTravel24 that includes flights, car hire, accommodation and meals. No mother-in-law can critique your cooking, driving or bed-making skill when everything is expertly taken care of for you.
Trips to avoid… with your siblings
Once again, this will depend on your siblings and whether or not they have procreated yet. If they have multiplied already, then you should really just avoid all trips.
While you love your nieces and nephews, I very much doubt you envisioned your holiday to include tropical sunsets, massages, room service and dirty nappies.
Most child friendly holiday resorts mean that, shockingly, there will be lots of children around.
Screaming kids can hinder relaxation and you will be surprised by how much your siblings will expect you to help out. And believe me, “I’m re-hydrating under a face mask in a hammock” will not be classified as a good enough excuse for you to be “too busy for bath time”.
The alternative: If traveling with toddlers and kids is unavoidable, try a safari in a malaria free area of South Africa. This means that kids will be safe and free of revolting malaria medication.
Many game lodges also have childcare facilities, so by doing some research and choosing one of these you will even be able to spend some adult time together.
About the author
Find More Families Articles