How to Choose a Destination for Your Family Trip to Asia

How to Choose a Destination for Your Family Trip to Asia

By CindyUpdated Jun. 9, 2021

Hot and chaotic, yet offering plenty of fun activities, great landscapes and food, Asia is an awesome choice for your family trip. Before you start planning, get an idea of where you want to go, considering time available, cost and whether the place is appropriate for your kids’ ages (given you are bringing kids).

“Hey where are we going this summer?” The fun of family trips starts the very second this question pops. Choosing a destination that is just right for your family, gives you a solid goal to aim for. Oftentimes, it is your budget that decides your destination and how you will be traveling (nothing but luxury or mid-range). Don’t get trapped here! Think out of the box and you will find more possibilities than you can imagine.

Brainstorming Your Interests as a Family

Get everybody around the dinner table and start brainstorming for your next family trip. Take turns to call on a desirable destination or an experience that you would enjoy or want to try for the first time. Involve your children in decision making. No matter how old your kids, their understanding or expectations of destinations might have your considerations flipped or impelled.

After some time of brainstorming, a list of country names (possibly with specific activities) may emerge. It might be a long one, especially if you are taking a big family. Now it is time to narrow down the list. Before you do, make sure your kids understand that their suggestions might be replaced or crossed off to suit the good of the entire family.

Understand the Time Frame and Weather

When talking about time frame, you need to decide when to travel, how long your trip should be and consider the international flight duration. Once settled on these three factors, you need to think about the weather of the listed destinations. This helps you screen out those countries or regions that seem less enjoyable during your time of travel; it also helps you adjust expectations.

Generally speaking, older kids adapt to longer journeys better than younger ones. Traveling with school kids means you would probably leave home in summertime or winter vacation for a couple of weeks. For these fully-charged little tigers, a week is too short a holiday. But smaller kids, aged below 12 years, might not be ready for too long a vacation away from home. Long-haul flights for toddlers require more pre-vacation preparation.

Define Your Budget

Your list is now shorter after the above two steps. Checking out how much you have budgeted for this trip depicts a clearer outline for your holiday. Legitimately, a nearer destination might look better on the bill than a destination on another continent. However, turn your mind around – a family trip to Asia doesn’t really cost that much, provided you plan it well.

International flights are one of the main expenses. The optimal plan would be to fly directly. If impossible, you should count an extra overnight stay for transit flights, so you and your kids don’t get worn out. When purchasing air tickets, you need to budget for 1) children’s prices; 2) baggage prices; 3) additional services such as special in-flight meals, advance boarding, seats together and VIP lounges.

Peak tourism season in Asia is October to March, costing USD150 to 250 per person per day, based on 4-star accommodation, USD250 and up for 5-star, excluding international airfares. During off-peak season, April to late September, it will be half the price. For children, you need to consider the cost for extra beds and internal flights, normally 70% of the adult cost.

Based on our years of tour operation, we have a chart of costs in each Asian destination at the bottom of this article (data for 2017, only for reference)

Country/Region Peak Tourism Seasons Hotel Ranking Cost per day/person (see Note 1) Cost in Off-Peak Seasons
Japan January to May, September to early December 4-star
5-star
USD320 to USD400
USD400 and up
USD280 to USD350
USD350 and up
Mainland China February to April, September to November 4-star
5-star
USD200 to USD280
USD280 and up
USD200 to USD280
USD280 and up
Mongolia May to early August 4-star
5-star
USD220 to USD280
-- (5-star accommodation is limited, not enough data for a conclusion)
USD180 to USD220
-- (5-star accommodation is limited, not enough data for a conclusion)
Vietnam October to May 4-star
5-star
USD150 to USD250
USD250 and up
USD120 to USD220
USD220 and up
Cambodia Late September to early April 4-star
5-star
USD180 to USD260
USD260 and up
USD150 to USD230
USD230 and up
Laos October to May 4-star
5-star
USD180 to USD260
USD260 and up
USD150 to USD230
USD230 and up
Myanmar Late September to April 4-star
5-star
USD200 to USD270
USD270 and up
USD160 to USD220
USD220 and up
Thailand Late September to May 4-star
5-star
USD160 to USD240
USD240 and up
USD120 to USD200
USD200 and up
India October to March 4-star
5-star
USD180 to USD260
USD260 and up
USD140 to USD200
USD200 and up
Singapore All year 4-star
5-star
USD200 to USD300
USD300 and up
USD200 and up
(no distinguishing line between
Malaysia November to March 4-star
5-star
USD180 to USD250
USD250 and up
USD150 to USD220
USD220 and up
Indonesia May to December 4-star
5-star
USD180 to USD240
USD240 and up
USD130 to USD220
USD220 and up
The Philippines January to May 4-star
5-star
USD140 to USD220
USD220 and up
USD80 to USD160
USD160 and up
Sri Lanka November to April 4-star
5-star
USD170 to USD250
USD250 and up
USD110 to USD200
USD200 and up
Nepal (see Note 2) October to November, June to September 4-star
5-star
USD150 to USD200 USD200 USD110 to USD160
USD160 and up
Bhutan (see Note 3) December to Februaryt 4-star
5-star
USD250 to USD350
-- not enough data for a conclusion
USD200 to USD280
-- not enough data for a conclusion
Brunei January to May 4-star
5-star
USD220 to USD350
USD350 and up
USD200 to USD280
USD280 and up

Notes:

  • 1. Cost is per day per person, excluding international flights, with English-speaking stationary(?) tour guides
  • 2. Cost for Nepal excludes Chitwan
  • 3. Cost for Bhutan excludes a mandatory daily fee, ranging from USD200 to USD300

Talk to an Expert

Use online tools smartly for research and go through reviews written by family travelers like you. Share the resources with your family and see how they react. Besides the domestic democracy, it is also vital to understand the suitability of different destinations for different age ranges and experiences. If you find yourself vacillating between options, find some trustworthy experts to talk to. They could be somebody who has been to these destinations or actually living there, and they should be honest enough to tell you what to expect.

You might want to skip travel agents as they always mean ‘more expensive’. That is not always true. Considering the time and effort that you can save, talking to an on-site expert actually is in line with your goals for a family trip: enjoyable, cost-efficient and meaningful.

A good agent, however, doesn’t really decide your destination per se. They act more like a sidekick who studies your interests and evaluates the possibilities. You always have the say in everything.

Look no further, Asia Highlights is right here, ready to create your trip. For more ideas, read our Top Destinations for Family Trips in Asia. Or get a quick start with us (Tailor-made button)

Plan your Family Trip to Asia with Asia Highlights

Asia Highlights welcomes the chance to help you achieve your travel plans. See our itinerary below and let us do the work for you.

15-Day Family Trip to Mongolia, China and Thailand

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Myanmar Travel Guide

Cambodia Travel Guide

Laos Travel Guide

Vietnam Travel Guide

Why Travel with Asia Highlights

  • Tailor-made experience: All of your ideas/needs will be carefully considered to create your ideal trip.
  • Worry-free planning: Every step of your trip, you will be looked after by your 1:1 travel consultant based in Asia.
  • No-risk booking: We refund as much as we can and adapt flexibly to unexpected changes.

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