In recent years, travelling during term time has become increasingly popular. Many parents opt to take their children out of school in order to take a holiday, and many schools have had to cope with the absences, authorised or not. Is term time travel a good idea for you?
The main reason people opt for term-time travel is the lower rates they can count on. As everyone wants to go on holiday during half-terms and summer hols, term-time travel allows travel organisers and airlines to give you some truly amazing discounts as a result. You could be looking at a savings of fifty percent or even more if you elect to travel during term time. This alone makes it a very popular option, and is the main driving force behind the term-time travel movement.
Another reason is the fact that even more tourist-riddled areas will be devoid of the crowds that visit it during the summer holidays or half-term weeks off. If you enjoy visiting tourist traps or simply like seeing the sights, a lower number of tourists will make your holiday a lot more enjoyable; this is the second-largest driving force behind taking the children out of school for a term-time holiday.
But is it a good idea to take your children out of school for a term-time trip away?
On one hand, it won’t harm your kids to have the odd trip away. School isn’t everything, and as long as their grades are holding up to scrutiny there is nothing wrong with teaching them that it is, occasionally, more important to give oneself a bit of time off than it is to spend every single day doing precisely what you’re supposed to and – eventually – succumbing to stress. Furthermore, there can be nothing quite like sneaking away for a holiday with mum and dad when all your child’s friends are at school learning about maths and English, and it can be a wonderful bonding experience for parents and children alike.
On the other hand, making a habit of term-time holidays can be a very poor idea indeed. Regular – or even annual – trips out during term time send your child a very clear message; that school and its trappings are not, ultimately, very important at all. While it is not, ultimately, the end of the world for your child to miss a few days of class (as long as they have no trouble following and are in no danger of falling behind), it is a problem when your child regularly misses out on the routine of school and the idea that doing their job – which is to say, going to school – is important.
Term-time holidays can save you money and lead to a better trip. But consider carefully whether you can afford to rob your child of those days in class; once in a while can be an amazing treat, but when it becomes a regular occurrence it will inevitably lead to trouble.