The Family Vacation: What Hotel Owners Need to Consider Post-COVID-19
By Janet Wright Director of Risk Management, Ryan Specialty Group | June 2020
Vacation season is here and after the year we've had, guests will likely be anxious to book their next vacation when the time is right. But not everyone will be looking for a Clark Griswold-style family vacation–with each family member side-by-side for the duration. No, many guests book vacations at hotels where they can get a little me-time while their children enjoy fun camps and supervised recreational activities. These camps and activities are often run either by the hotel directly or through contracts with third-party organizations.
The truth is, camp offerings for children are at the top of many parents' wish lists when searching for the perfect getaway. Hoteliers realize the importance of this amenity and aim to offer a safe and enjoyable experience for the whole family.
Increasingly, safety is at the forefront of everyone's mind in light of the COVID-19 virus outbreak. Though at the time of writing this article, the full impact this pandemic will have on the world and our global economy remains unclear, we continue to consider how the hospitality industry can better itself. And, when it comes to family-safe programming now or in a post-pandemic world, we want to continue to explore what resorts can do to provide a safe and enjoyable family programs without taking away from a memorable experience.
Hotel and resort camp offerings can vary greatly, depending on the activities and age and number of children attending. Care can be by the hour, multi-hour or all day long with the option to choose among multiple activities throughout the day.
Some locations offer beach-themed camps including those designed around surfing, tide pooling, beachcombing and paddle boarding. For teens, hotels and resorts offer age appropriate organized activities like spa services, arcade events, movie nights, s'mores around a fire, sand crab flashlight hunting, equestrian experiences, and dance parties, among other things. Still more traditional camps offer kids activities focused on tennis, golf, baking, eco-friendly activities, swimming or nature walks to explore their surroundings.
With all these offerings available, hotel owners and operators do their best to remain competitive and differentiate themselves from others in the marketplace. While they may be eager to jump into a new camp activity to appeal to guests, they should understand that they are exposing themselves to liability.