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Making the Most of Your Family's Vacation

What makes a great family vacation? There is no one way to do it, even if you've taken the same vacation year after year. Keeping an open mind, recognizing that the vacation is for everyone, and striving towards compromise can separate the sparklers from the duds.

Photo of a girl doing homework.For starters:

Make Road Trips a Breeze
Does the idea of traveling by car with your kids this summer make you want to stay home?

Alphabet Search—Players search for the letters of the alphabet on buildings, billboards, license plates, etc. The first player to get to the letter Z is the winner.

Cliffhanger—One person begins a suspenseful story. When she gets to the cliffhanger, the next player continues the story. The story continues from person to person until its conclusion. Start the story off with humorous titles, too, such as "The Weirdest First Day of School."

Travel Bingo—Create 9-by-9 inch bingo cards beforehand decorated with pictures of things travelers might see on a trip. When players spy the object (such as a flower, an animal, or a landmark) they mark the square with a sticky note. The winner is the first player to cover a row…or the whole card.

I'm Thinking Of—Similar to the game 20 Questions, this game requires someone to think of a person, place, or thing. The objective is to stump the other players so it should be something familiar but not too obvious. The others ask questions about the object that can be answered with a yes or no. When a player receives a no answer, it ends her turn and the next player asks. The player who guesses the secret person, place, or thing gets to be the lead player.