(BPT) - Summer is the perfect time to travel as a family, and it's never too early to think about your next trip. Between coordinating family activities with your work schedule, looking ahead to maximize hotel and flight deals, or researching the best excursions for the whole family, it's always helpful to think ahead. As you plan your next family getaway, these tips will help ensure you-and your whole family-have the ultimate travel experience.
Pack Like a Pro
When traveling as a family, the necessities pile up quickly. Consider using packing cubes, doubling up children's travel essentials into one bag, or vacuum sealing bags to help fit your things into a smaller carry-on. Be sure to check out airline baggage requirements ahead of time to ensure you don't get hit with additional fees or costs when you get to the airport. For example, when flying Southwest®, bags fly free® (first and second checked bags, weight and size limits apply), so families have a little extra room for all their additional needs.
Leverage Credit Card Rewards and Benefits
Using a travel credit card is a great way to earn rewards on everyday spending throughout the year, as well as providing certain perks and benefits that can make future travel more convenient. If you choose the right credit card, you might even be able to optimize your travel from the second you leave home to when you touch back down from your trip, earning points all along the way.
Southwest Rapid Rewards™ Credit Cardmembers from Chase, for example, have access to opportunities to earn toward travel, like 2X points on Rapid Rewards® hotel and car rental partners. If car rentals aren't in your plans, Cardmembers also earn 2X points on local transit and commuting purchases, including rideshare. Either way, your transportation will earn you more Rapid Rewards points towards a future vacation.
Prepare and Plan Travels and Itineraries
Timing is everything when it comes to planning summer travel. Costs and availability can fluctuate regularly depending on your destination's peak seasons, especially while everyone is trying to take advantage of summer break. Think about what you and your family love to do to determine your destination and timing in advance, easing the stress of last-minute scheduling.
On top of planning departures and travel itineraries, factoring in time to check-in to the flight and get to the airport on time is an important step, especially when adding family to the equation. To ease this stress, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus and Premier Credit Cards from Chase offer Cardmembers two EarlyBird Check-Ins® per year, providing the convenience of automatic check-in 36 hours ahead of the flight. Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Cardmembers can receive four Upgraded Boardings per year when available, resulting in a preferred boarding position and earlier access to store their carry-on luggage.
Between May 23 and June 26, 2023, new Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus, Premier, and Priority Credit Cardmembers can earn 60,000 points plus a 30% promotional code to use towards future travel (based on base fares when applied before taxes and fees) after spending $3,000 in the first three months from account opening. The promotional code expires October 31, 2024. Offers like this can give you and the family a massive head start on booking your dream vacation.
We all deserve a little rest, relaxation, and time with our families. Although traveling with the whole family can seem daunting, using these tips can ease the burden and help you travel like a pro this upcoming summer season.
*Accounts subject to credit approval. Restrictions and limitations apply. Cards are issued by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Member FDIC. All Rapid Rewards rules and regulations apply and can be found at Southwest.com/rrterms.