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Surviving a Tri-Generational Trip to Ireland

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6. Consider the Wheelchair

Most airports have wheelchairs available for anyone with mobility issues. My mom, who has a hip problem, finally succumbed, and enjoyed a comfortable ride, rather than exhaust herself walking to the gate in the Dublin Airport.

7. Splurge on Extra Coverage

Which coverage, you ask? Every coverage you are offered, if possible. Trip insurance, international medical coverage, damage waivers on rental cars, and remember, don’t forget the extra tire and wheel protection. We had a tire blowout on the third day of our trip, but were reimbursed within minutes at Dan Dooley Car Rental because of that coverage.

8. Listen to Music

Listen to Music. All the time. It goes without saying that you must check out pubs such as Matt Malloy in Westport for traditional Irish music (children of all ages are allowed!); however, listen to music in your rental car and your room, too. Take turns. Make mix CDs ahead of time. Three generations singing along to Frank Sinatra, Drake, and Earth, Wind and Fire is fun, trust me.

9. Keep an Open Mind

When traveling with multiple generations, you are bound to get a variety of suggestions for activities. My son was crazy about the falconry lesson at Ireland’s School of Falconry at Ashford Castle. My mom loved visiting historic sites such as the elegant Constitution Room at the Shelbourne Dublin or having tea at Kylemore Abbey. What I loved most was walking through the forest after a rain in the greenest place I have ever been.

10. Let Go

With different generations traveling together, things are bound to take a little more time. Understand that you will miss out on a few things on your list. It’s OK. You are with the people you love. Plus, now you have a reason to come back.

By Jennifer Evans Gardner for PeterGreenberg.com. Jennifer Evans Gardner has written for The Los Angeles Times, Wandermelon, Huffington Post, and Zagat, among other publications. Her latest cookbook, Meringue, has just been released (Gibbs Smith, August 2012, Jackson and Gardner).  She is the owner of Little Feet in the Kitchen – The Cooking School for Adventurous Young Chefs in LA, where she teaches children as young as 5 to cook and eat “real food.”   For more information, go to www.jenevansgardner.com.

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