1. Pick a holiday home rather than a hotel
When you’re in a hotel as a big group, chances are your rooms will be scattered all over the place. Even if you’re next to each other, you’re still surrounded by other people and separated by locked doors.
On the other hand, if you pick a holiday home, you’ve got everyone all in one place. Plus there’s no worries about staying up late or hogging the facilities. You’ll have the run of the kitchen, so you don’t need to worry about whether or not the hotel will be able to cater to everyone’s needs – you’ll be in complete control.
Just make sure you pick a holiday home that’s large enough for all of you to fit in comfortably. We’ve got luxury options that sleep up to 20 people – perfect for a big group getaway!
2. Talk about budget before you go
Although you probably discussed budget before booking, don’t forget to talk about your on-holiday budget with the whole group, too. Make sure everyone’s expectations and limitations are clear – you don’t want someone to be left out because they can’t afford the restaurant you chose or the activities you’ve arranged. There are activities for every budget, but you need to know the budget in order to plan the right ones.
Many groups put money into a kitty for meals and drinks and any grocery shopping during the trip. This can work really well, but it’s definitely something to discuss beforehand. If one person doesn’t drink, they might feel a little hard done by if their kitty money is subsidising everyone else’s wine budget. Communication is key! Perhaps a kitty for food but not drink would work better, or the other way around. Whatever works for your group, just make sure you’ve sorted the details before you get away, so you can relax and enjoy your holiday as soon as you arrive.
3. Coordinate before you pack
This one links in with point 2, but deserves its own section, too… Plan between you who is bringing what on your holiday. If you have a self-catering holiday home, there’s no sense in everyone in the group bring tea and coffee – unless you all have different tastes, of course.
Decide who brings the tea and coffee, who’s responsible for sugar and milk, who’s in charge of snacks and other sundries. That way you won’t end up with six jars of coffee but no biscuits.
Even better, avoid having to plan and pack food at all by arranging a delivery of fresh food to arrive when you do – we recommend Pretty Local. You can get everything you need, all from local suppliers, delivered to the door of your Salcombe Finest holiday home. Supporting the local economy and not having to go to the supermarket? Seems like a win-win to us.
Another thing to coordinate is who is doing what – don’t make one person be responsible for everything. That way, you don’t get one person burning out, and everyone gets to participate in making your holiday special.
4. Pre-book restaurants
When you want a table for more than 5 or 6 people, pre-booking is essential. Even on a weekday, many restaurants will struggle to fit a large group if they’re not prepared for you. If you’ve got somewhere special in mind, pre-booking is even more important.
We’ve got some wonderful restaurants in Salcombe you won’t want to miss, so call early and secure your table.
Pre-book as far in advance as you can – you’ll get better service and you won’t be hanging around waiting for the table reshuffle. Plus, the quality of the food will be better – the bigger the group, the harder it is to get all the meals out at the same time. If the restaurant have enough warning, they can plan other reservations for times that won’t clash with yours, making the chef’s life a lot easier.
5. Choose a range of activities
If you’re going away as a family, you’ll likely have a number of different age groups to cater for. Go away as a group of friends and no matter how close you are, you’ll have different tastes and interests to take into account. Make sure you plan a range of different activities so that everyone gets to have a good time.
In Salcombe, you can arrange activities out on the estuary that range from nicely sedate to active and exciting – the choices are practically endless. You can arrange kayaking and paddleboarding for the more adventurous and sailing for the more sedate. Or head for shore and try out crabbing and sand-castle-building for little ones, coastal walks and yoga for the quieter among you, and top it all off with some fine foods for everyone.
6. Plan some free time
No matter how much your love your family or friends, spending every minute of every day with them on holiday can be a lot to take sometimes. Schedule some time without plans, where everyone can do their own thing. That way, the people who want to wander round the shops can split off together, those who need a lie in can relax, and those who need a bit of alone time can go for a walk on the beach.
You’ll enjoy each other’s company so much more if you’re not required to spend every moment together. But why not encourage everyone to try something new, too? Then you’ll all go home with some fabulous memories. We recently posted about some of the more unusual activities to try in Salcombe, if you need a little inspiration!
7. Pack some fun and games
There’s nothing quite like a big family game of rounders or volleyball on the beach. Millbay is massive, so there’s plenty of space for you and your bats, and it’s something the whole family can get involved in.
A football, a set of boules, a small cricket set… There are loads of great, fun-for-all-ages games that are perfect for playing on the beach. Inflatables are always fun too, but be careful and use responsibly around water to keep everyone safe.
8. Create the inevitable WhatsApp group – but don’t forget other methods
Coordinating a group holiday these days tends to mean setting up a group WhatsApp. Some people love them and some hate them, but having everyone in one place can be extremely helpful and sharing all your Salcombe pictures afterwards is great fun (don’t forget to tag us if you share your snaps online! @salcombe_finest)
If your group gets chatty and people start missing specific questions, it’s time to head back to phone calls and emails, just to make sure everything gets done! You could also keep your group to one decision-maker per family/group, if that cuts down on the extraneous chatter.
But your WhatsApp group will be useful when you’re trying to coordinate what time everyone needs to be back for dinner, if you’ve had a day of doing different things. If it starts to get a bit too much, you can always mute the conversation and come back to it when you have a minute.