Group trips make for some of the most memorable and enjoyable vacations, but they can be stressful to plan. If you’re in charge of your group trip to Canmore and are feeling daunted, read on. We’ve got 10 stress-free tips for organizing your Canmore vacation group booking.
#1: Designate a Leader or Specific Roles
Having a leader helps to organize your group and ensure that decisions get made in a timely fashion. Choose someone who is fair and will listen to what the group wants, but can also be firm when the group can’t decide. You could also designate multiple people for this role, but clarify what each person is meant to plan, such as one person to book accommodations, one to plan meals, one to schedule activities, and so on. And don’t be afraid to ask for help. Having roles will keep things on track.
#2: Figure Out Your Group’s Budget
Nobody likes to talk about money. But if you want to avoid covering the costs for others, or having someone feel left out because they can’t afford it, then you’ll need a budget. One of the first steps is to discuss what everybody can, and is willing, to spend on the trip. Discuss in private with individual members to avoid putting anyone on the spot. You could also send out a poll using Google Surveys to gather information anonymously about the budget. Figuring out a fair budget that can be split equally or that doesn’t put anyone under financial pressure is essential.
#3: Set Deadlines
While it may seem unnecessary, forcing a deadline on your friends or family members will help speed the process along. It will also force those who normally drag their feet to hurry up or to be left out of the planning. It’s strict, but if you don’t set a date, it will feel like you’re chasing everyone down and leaving things to the last minute. Set a deadline for tasks such as getting your members’ share of the cost, for booking tours, vacation rentals or transportation.
#4: Know When to Be Firm
Asserting your role as a leader for the group might be uncomfortable, but if your group is bickering, you need to step in. You could also implement an anonymous voting system: have everyone put their choice in a hat and count out the votes, or use an anonymous poll using Google Forms. Long back and forths will only disrupt planning and make it harder to book your best options when crunch time comes.
#5: Use a Planner or an App to Keep Track
Keep track of your group’s decisions by using a planner or an organizational app. There are plenty of options out there, including some you might already have on your phone. Write down dates, vacation rentals, who owes what, who is in charge of what, and so on. This will help you remember what you need to know, and it means you won’t have to memorize anything. Here are some options that may be useful to you:
- Road Trip Planner (Physical Planner)
- Travel Checklist Journal (Physical Planner)
- Wanderlog Trip Planning App (Free)
#6: Book a Canmore Rental With Plenty of Space
While it may seem easier to let everyone book their own accommodation, the most cost-efficient approach is to book a larger vacation rental. This also means that everyone can stay under one roof, and it will streamline the process, instead of having multiple bookings. There are plenty of comfortable and luxury vacation rentals in Canmore at a great value. You’ll also want to reserve your Canmore vacation rental well in advance as they get booked up fast. Check out Spring Creek Vacations’ Rundle Cliffs Lodge or White Spruce Lodge for stunning vacation rentals that will fit your group’s needs.
#7: Plan Out Your Group Transportation
Is your group carpooling to Canmore? Is anyone flying in and will need a ride from the airport? How will you get around once you arrive? If your group is carpooling, set up transportation buddies. Whoever they are “assigned” to means that they will travel together, and can sort out gas and schedules for themselves. If you are all leaving from the same city, you could also look into a private shuttle or bus. Plan out how you will get to Canmore, who is travelling with who, and how your group will move around once they arrive, ahead of time.
#8: Delegate Meal and Activity Planning
Don’t leave this until the last minute. Figure out who needs to bring what, when your group will go out for dinner together or separately, and what activities to book. Schedule group activities, and time for individual members to do their own things. Not every single minute must be scheduled, but do include some fixed activities and meals together to keep everyone entertained. As for any meals cooked in your rental, assign who will bring what, such as protein, veggies, snacks, wine, and so on. If you are hoping to eat out with your group, reserve a table ahead of time to avoid disappointment. Make a list and write down who is responsible for what.
#9: Create A Checklist
It’s almost go-time. If you can make a checklist for your group, this will help simplify everything and ensure that no one forgets anything. However, this checklist should be more about the group’s needs and not a list of personal items. Let them write their own personal list if need be. Your group checklist should include things like:
- Vacation rental booked
- Activities scheduled
- Food & beverages packed appropriately (in coolers if possible)
- Reservations set
- Transportation planned
#10: Remember: Have fun!
Planning can be stressful, but as soon as you’re in Canmore, the fun will begin! Once you’re looking at the Three Sisters Mountain Range view from your sprawling Spring Creek Vacations deck, or sitting in the hot tub with your friends after a big day of skiing at Lake Louise, it will all be worth it. Take a deep breath of that crisp mountain air and relax, because now there’s nothing left but to enjoy it.