Ahead of the 2022 summer travel season, RVshare tapped 500 kids, ages 5-15, to gain direct insight into what kids want out of family travel, what they most look forward to, and how involved kids are in the trip planning.
Surprisingly, RVshare found that the majority of kids (64%), even as young as 5 years old, aim to be decision-makers in their households, weighing in on all aspects of vacation planning.¹
RVshare’s family-focused survey provides a comprehensive analysis of kids’ preferences while traveling with their families on vacation. According to the findings, nearly 2 in 3 kids (64%) want a say in where their family goes next on vacation, and more than half of kids aged 5-8 (57%) want to hit the road on their next family vacation as soon as possible. Additionally, 82% of kids surveyed reported that going on new adventures is their favorite part of family travel, according to a news release.
“Family travel fuels so much of our business, and we know kids have strong opinions but wondered if travel was something they wanted to weigh-in on,” said RVshare’s CEO Jon Gray in the news release. “We asked kids directly what aspects of travel they want to influence, remember and cherish. New adventures with loved ones are at the top of the list and RVshare is a perfect facilitator for that.”
RVshare has tapped Alex Wong, the brand’s first-ever Resident Kid Counselor, to share RVshare’s survey findings on behalf of kids and teens across the country. A Southern California native, Wong, age 9, enjoys traveling with his adventurous family – planning trips around their favorite activities like hiking, camping, biking, swimming, skiing, and exploring new places. The Wong family exemplifies what it means to live intentionally and joyfully, and document their frequent travels, destination tips, and outdoor adventures on social media at @everydayadventurefam.
“Being RVshare’s first Resident Kid Counselor is so cool!” Wong said in the release. “My favorite part of traveling is getting to spend time with my family and trying new activities outdoors. I recently went on an RV vacation with my family, and it was awesome. We hiked and made s’mores around the campfire.”
Continue reading below for a summary of kids’ top picks and preferences when it comes to family travel. A link to view the report in its entirety can be found here.
RVshare found that for 40% of kids, it has been a year or more since their family took a vacation. Many kids are eager to get on the road again and they’re not afraid to let their parents know where they want to go next.
- Nearly 2 in 3 kids (64%) want a say in where their family goes on vacation.
- Nearly all (96%) say they get to help plan at least one aspect of a family vacation, including nearly half (46%) who say they at least get to help in planning where they go. Even more get to help plan what they do on a family vacation, with more than 3 in 4 kids (77%) saying they get to help with this.
- Around 2 in 5 preteens (39%) and even more teens (44%) would prefer to wait until the current school year ends to take their next family vacation, but their younger siblings aren’t so patient. More than half of kids ages 5-8 (57%) want to hit the road ASAP!
- Vacations have a lot to offer kids, the majority of whom say they enjoy going on adventures (82%) and exploring new places (80%), while others like to be active (52%) and meet new kids (34%).
- But it’s not just the destination: nearly 3 in 4 kids (74%) say fun stops along the way are among their favorite parts of road tripping.
- When it comes to family road trips, most kids (98%) say there’s something about them they enjoy—especially snacking on junk food in the car (80%). That might be why deciding where to eat (71%) is a top family vacation experience kids say they help plan.
- A majority of kids ages 5-8 (53%) count road games and singalongs as a favorite road trip pastime, but just 44% of preteens and even fewer teens (40%) say the same.
Happy Parents, Happy Kids
- For nearly 3 in 5 kids (58%), seeing their family members having fun is one of the best parts of family vacations. More than 9 in 10 kids (91%) say spending time with family during vacation is really or super important to them, including over half (51%) who say it’s the best part.
- As many parents of a teenager might know, the older a kid is, the more, ahem, opinionated they become. A sizable 71% of kids ages 13-15 want to decide their vacation destination, significantly more than their younger peers (63%).
Head of the Family
While kids admit the grown-ups have the bigger say in where they go for family vacations, preteens seem to be the most persuasive.
- A fifth of kids ages 9-12 (20%) says they have more say than the adults on where to go on a family vacation, significantly more than their younger peers (12%) and almost triple the 7% of their older peers who say the same.
¹ The RVshare Kids Travel Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research among 500 US kids ages 5-15 with parental approval. The survey was fielded in February 2022.