Tuesday 10 January 2017

Our 5 Year Travel Plan

We've all heard of the 5 year plan, right?!

Those life plans made around the topic of homes, mortgages, marriages and babies that very few of us tend to stick to?

Well, I stopped making such plans a long time ago as I soon discovered that nothing ever goes according to them so why bother...but I haven't given up on the concept entirely.

The Virgo in me loves a list, and so when I turned 35 at the tail end of 2016 I decided to start a 5 Year Travel Plan...I made a list of the top places I'd love to visit with the boys, and set about pricing them up, working out our travel budget, figuring out the ages the boys would be at each point over the course of the next 5 years and decided which destination fit best with their ages and our budgets in each of the five years!


Having the plan in place has allowed me to organise our holidays according to what will suit them all age wise, and given me specific savings goals to work towards to ensure we can pull them all off.

So what does our 5 Year Plan look like?


Our travel plans are already long booked and organised for this year, kicking off with a trip to Butlins Minehead in March.

We visited Butlins Minehead last year and the kids really enjoyed it, and surprisingly so did we! It was one of the most fun and relaxing family holidays we've had to date and all five of us are excited to go back again.

This time we're visiting between Tyne & Noah's 4th and 2nd birthdays, so it should really add to all of the birthday excitement!

Our second and main holiday of the year is a 2 week Mediterranean Cruise on board the fabulous Royal Caribbean cruise ship  Independence Of The Seas.

After our first taster of a family cruise with P & O last year, we were determined to try again with a more "fun" ship and we knew it just had to be the Indy - Jon & I enjoyed a 10 day Canary Isles cruise on board the Indy back in 2012 and had the time of our lives, so we just know that the kids will absolutely love the party ship atmosphere.

The itinerary for the cruise looks great, and we're visiting quite a few destinations that none of us has been to before including two ports in Italy (Rome, and Florence/Pisa), two in the South Of France (Nice & Provence),  as well as Gibraltar and Malaga, and Lisbon in Portgual (which is the only port we have visited before).

With those two holidays planned, and big ideas for holidays over the coming years we need to try and be careful with any additional breaks we take but I'm crossing my fingers that we may be able to squeeze in another mini break to Disneyland Paris and perhaps Cornwall. We can only hope!


The plan for this year is to plan a definite Disneyland Paris trip around the boys birthdays in March, as we're not sure if we'll get there in 2017 so want to be sure of a visit in 2018!

We then plan to surprise the boys with a trip to Santa's Lapland in December as our big trip of the year. The trips are quite pricey for how short they are, and we did toy with the idea of doing a day trip but I don't enjoy flying at all and as this will be my first flight in a long time I don't really fancy the idea of doing the outbound and return ones so close together...I'd rather spend a couple of days there and spread them out!

The kids will be 5, 3 and 2 when we have our visit which I think will be the perfect ages for it as they will hopefully all be right in the middle of that magical stage of proper unquestioning belief in Santa and will hopefully all understand the whole Christmas thing (their birthdays are February and March, so the youngest two will be almost 3 and 4!).

I'm really looking forward to this one as it's somewhere I have always wanted to go and I think the experience with the kids will be unforgettable, I really hope we can pull this one off.


This is the year that we will need to go for lower key holidays in order to save up for a bigger trip next year, so the plan is to try to visit a few places in and around the UK that we haven't been to before and have always wanted to see.

My top choice for this is to visit Ireland as I have always wanted to go and for some reason have never got around to it, so this would be the ideal time for a visit.

I do think that Ireland might not be all that exciting a prospect for the kids though, so we will also try to squeeze in a trip to Center Parcs around Christmas time too if we can stretch to it.

There will be no Disneyland Paris trip planned this year, becaaaause...


Is the year of Walt Disney World!

It's something I've been thinking about for ages and I have always wanted to visit, but I hate flying so much that the prospect of the long journey has put me off (although I have flown longer distances before to Venezuela, but I seem to have become more afraid since then?!).

But after how much we all loved Disneyland Paris, I really think that taking the plunge and experiencing Walt Disney World as a family is a must - we want to wait until all 3 of the boys are old enough to get something out of it and old enough that they will be able to go on most of the rides as we don't have other family members to travel with and wouldn't want to be split up with someone staying off to hold the baby...so in 2020 when Tyne will be 7, Noah will be 5 and Sailor will be 4 I think the timing will be perfect - they should all be able to ride most things, and they should all be able to deal with the flight times.

I just hope we can save enough to stretch to it, but I'm hoping that a lower key travel year in 2019 will make it possible - fingers crossed!


This is the year of the BIG 4-0 for me so it seems only fair that the years holiday destination is the one place I have been dying to visit ever since I can remember, the ONE destination I would most love to tick off my list...

The place that, if someone gifted me a million pounds tomorrow, I would immediately head off to...


The year of my 40th birthday seems like the perfect time to FINALLY treat myself to a trip to the Big Apple, and I can't think of a better time to go than Christmas when we can see the huge tree at Rockefeller Centre and go ice skating...I'm undecided about whether to visit in early December or just go all out and aim for a New Years visit but we'll see...


So there it is...the 5 Year Travel Plan! It's ambitious, I admit...there are some pricey trips on there but I am hopeful that with a bit of frugality and a lot of saving that we will be able to pull it off...fingers crossed!!!

If you have been to any of these destinations and came point me in the direction of deals, money saving tips or blogs on the subject...please let me know!

And of course we'll be blogging our way throughout, too so don't forget to pop back for updates!

Do you have a 5 year travel plan? I'd love to hear whats on your Travel bucket list!

Dear Bear and Beany


  1. What a wicked idea. I just love it. Never thought about a cruise with kids look forward to seeing how it goes and so much to get excited about too #sundaybest

  2. What a great idea to plan it all out according to ages and so you can budget. What a lot to look forward too! I'd love to visit New York too x #SundayBest

  3. This year is our low key holiday year - we have a week in Cornwall planned, but we won't be doing anything else. I'm very jealous of your cruise - Florence and Rome are two of my favourite places - and Disney is our future big one too - just got to weigh up the best ages of children to visit (and get the funds together of course!) Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

  4. Oh wow - I'd love to be this organised! #sundaybest

  5. SO many fab places, I want to take the boys to Disney in a few years. So magical!

  6. Love these. I hope to return to WDW in the next few years too and I'd love to visit New York and see America. xx

  7. What a great idea! I'm so jealous of your cruise it sounds amazing and I love ITALY!! Disney is on our list too and I can't wait to take the girls. I am hoping that a kind person takes me to NYC for my 40th too!!! Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove x

  8. Awesome! NYC was always on my list to get to for Christmas...then all of a sudden I got a job offer last fall and ended up moving here to NYC in December. Sometimes you just never know where life will take you!

    -Kirsten || pork & cookies

  9. 2020 is my Disneyworld planned year too!! My three will be 8, 5 & 4!

  10. Glad to see you again. Great thoughts shared. You explained 5 year tour plan is just amazing. I will recommend you whenever you plan to travel abroad, never forget to book cheap airport parking and stay away from all travel hassles.
    airport parking Birmingham
    airport parking Heathrow


© Sparkle's Suitcase | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template by pipdig