|Nizuc designed a kid’s club to encourage family travelers.|
Multi-gen interest in Mexico continues on the upswing. According to the Mexico Tourism Board, nearly three million travelers from the U.S. visited Cancun in 2014.
Tips for Selling Multigenerational Travel
“Family travel is our most important niche and it’s probably the most important overall for Mexico,” Angelica Espinosa, sales and marketing manager for Catherwood Travels, tells Luxury Travel Advisor.
Mexico’s hospitality is oft-cited as the key to its success, but history and geography are star attractions as well. The country’s 32 states hold 32 UNESCO World Heritage sites. That’s the fifth-largest number in the world.
For Randy Otts, owner of 2 Getaway Travel in Houston, TX, Mexico is a best-seller.
The powerhouse destinations for families, of course, are Cancun and the Riviera Maya.
Sue Burcaw, a travel consultant with All-Ways Travel in West Berlin, NJ finds her clients want the Caribbean beaches. “People want that beautiful calm water and white sand.”
In the “what’s new, up and coming” category, put kids programming on top. Not the traditional all-day clubs, but the new breed of clubs designed to encourage bonding between adults and children. As an example: Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach Cancun Resort and Spa will open the largest kids’ club in the Caribbean this summer.
|The Grand Coral Beach pool at Fiesta Americana is designed for families to relax together.|
Family-friendly activities extend beyond the comfort of a managed kids’ program, however.
“The family activities that we can sell in Mexico are always expanding. The most popular are dolphin swims, and some type of snorkeling excursion,” says Burcaw.
“Don’t underestimate the interests of kids, teens and young adults. Exposing them to cultural, educational travel can be life-changing, and there’s no better place for that than Mexico,” said Stephanie Schneiderman, owner of Tia Stephanie Tours.
While most kids won’t jump with joy at the mention of “culture” or “education,” it’s all in the presentation. “The secret is to plan a trip that features interactive activities and surprises,” says Espinosa, whose company includes a bike tour of a colonial city.
“It’s important not to simply drag kids around to archaeological zones. At some of them, such as Chichen Itza, you aren’t even allowed to climb. But there are over 1,500 archaeological sites in the Yucatan alone. If you go to Mayapan, you can be the only ones visiting.” says Espinosa.