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Family Vacations: The Art of Compromise

Have you ever heard someone say, "You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours"? That's all about compromise and cooperation. It's the idea that if two or more people each get a little of what they want, then everybody will be happy.

Compromise is important to keep in mind while you're on a family vacation. You may not get to do every single thing you want for as long as you want to do it, but if you're good at making compromises, you'll probably have a great time anyway. Here are some examples of what we're talking about:

Conflict: Your parents want to get dressed up and go to a fancy restaurant, but you'd be happier hitting a fast-food place.

Compromise #1: You talk it out and agree to a fun, cheap place for lunch, but then a fancier place for dinner.

Compromise #2: You agree to a sit-down place that's nice, but doesn't require getting dressed up and has a good kid's menu.

Conflict: Your older sibling wants to spend the day at the beach, but you have your heart set on going for a bike ride.

Compromise #1: You agree to divide the day: biking in the morning, then the beach in the afternoon.

Compromise #2: You split up into two groups. Your sibling hits the beach with some local friends while you go biking with your parents. Even though the family isn't together for the whole day, at least you'll all be in good moods by dinnertime.

Money and Shopping
Conflict: You want something cool from a souvenir shop, but your mother says it costs way too much and won't let you have it.

Compromise #1:You agree to a fixed allowance for the trip, and anything you buy comes out of that allowance. Once the money is gone, it's gone.

Compromise #2: You talk it over, and understand that even though the item is cool, the money could be better spent on other things. You choose a less expensive souvenir, and the savings go towards a fabulous meal or activity.

Remember: The whole idea behind compromise is that you give a little in order to get a little. This can go a long way towards avoiding major family drama-and making it a true vacation for everyone involved.

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