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The Importance of Traveling With Your Children

One of the greatest gifts you can give your children and grandchildren is the opportunity to get out of their comfort zone and experience the myriad of adventures that await them beyond their hometown. Travel provides not only the opportunity to see new and exciting things, but offers many valuable life lessons and skills as well.

Here are just a few ways that traveling with your children will enrich their lives:

Taking your kids on a trip with you demonstrates their importance to you.  When you actively show that you want to spend your time with them by choosing to take them along with you, they begin to understand their own value as individuals. Children learn more through your actions than your words and demonstrating that you are willing to spend your most valuable resource – your time – with them conveys their importance far more than the habitual “I love you.”

Travel teaches kids about diversity. Simply traveling to another state gives children insight into how others’ lives differ from their own. They get exposed to different foods, different living situations, even different accents and people. Interaction with a diverse population of people over the course of their childhood helps them become more accepting and open minded adults.

Travel helps kids overcome their fears. Venturing out of your comfort zone and into a new place can be daunting to anyone. Imagine doing so as a child with endless wonder and imagination. Children are safely led to confront all sorts of new experiences while traveling from new foods to new places to sleep and everything in between. When they safely confront and conquer a new experience, their confidence grows and their willingness and capability to tackle new challenges increases.

Engaging them in the planning process is a fantastic learning experience. Problem solving skills, map reading, decision making, budgeting, and scheduling are just a few of the lessons your children can learn as you include them in your trip planning and these are all important life skills that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. Including your children in the planning process helps them become engaged with the trip and the itinerary. They have a hand in the adventure and learn what is possible, how to make things happen, and then to embrace the outcome.

Traveling fosters independence. Allowing your children to be responsible for packing their own bag (with supervision) enables them to plan out what they need and what they don’t. Holding your children accountable for keeping track of their own belongings, making sure that their luggage isn’t too heavy for them to carry, and packing efficiently fosters critical decision making skills and living with the outcomes of your decisions. Helping them to plan ahead to save money to buy their own souvenirs and perhaps leaving one or two items behind to save room for those souvenirs also fosters these skills.

Traveling with your children builds communication. Getting away from the regular routine of school and extracurricular practices and into new and different experiences brings up a vast array of conversation points. Instead of asking about their day at school, you can actively engage them in a conversation about what they learned that day at the museum, or the aquarium, or the battlefield, etc. You can ask them how they felt to learn this, if it changed their minds about what they thought about life, how they will describe the experience to their friends when they get home, their favorite part of the day, the guide they met. The opportunities are endless and the value of having a deep and meaningful conversation about new discoveries is priceless.


Traveling with your children is an invaluable experience for them and for you! While traveling with little ones can be stressful, it doesn’t have to be. Starr offers a Kids Sale every summer that makes traveling with your children and grandchildren even more affordable and we offer great bus trips with a mix of planned activity and opportunity to explore on your own. Call us, or check out our website for more information on all that we have to offer! We look forward to welcoming you and your children on our bus trips!

For tips on Preparing Tiny Travelers for Big Adventures, check out our blog post!

Preparing Tiny Travelers For Big Adventures

Preparing Tiny Travelers For Big Adventures

It’s always exciting planning the perfect summer trip with your little ones. You found the best deal, maybe bought some snazzy new clothes for your getaway, and now it’s time to prepare the kids for the adventure! You can tell them all about your bus trip: your chosen destination, the fantastic sites you plan to visit and new cuisine you plan to try, but be sure to let them know what they can expect during travel too.

When you start packing for your bus trip, don’t forget to pack for the bus ride! If you keep your child entertained with an iPad or phone, always make sure that it is charged and ready for a long drive. Some stores even sell iPhone cases that charge themselves when the battery dies. Other options to keep your children entertained are workbooks with word games, coloring books, or something fun to read. Personally, I remember having a ball with disposable cameras when I was little! It’s a great idea to purchase a few for your kids to capture their own memories. Packing some healthy, non-perishable snacks like nuts or dried fruit can help when those little tummies start getting hungry too! It’s also a good idea to bring plenty of water and a change of clothes (for the wee ones) in case an accident happens while on board.

Another idea, either before the bus trip or on-board the bus, would be to get your kids excited about the destination by showing them pictures, brushing up on history, or exploring websites. Many websites and attractions have a kid’s section with things to know or check out. Showing this to your children on the way to your destination could spark an immediate interest and build their excitement before your arrival.

The night before you depart, you’ll want to make sure your family gets plenty of sleep. Traveling can really take a toll on your body – little ones, especially! – so it’s important to start your trip well-rested.

Pre-trip prep is key for a happy, relaxing ride.

Make sure that your children know what they can expect when traveling via motorcoach. Take a potty-break before arriving to the pick-up point. Let them know that there will be lots of other people on the coach so it’s polite to use inside voices, remain quiet when announcements come on from the Tour Director and/or driver, and stay seated for safety. Safety is our top priority at Starr and we wouldn’t want any of our tiny travelers to get hurt!

You can always count on our destinations to be fun and thrilling, but the adventure starts before the bus even departs. Kids thrive on the excitement of their parents and traveling companions, so the more you know and prepare them, and the more excited you are, the better the trip will be for everyone! Planning and preparing early makes for less stress leading up to the trip and it’s sure to give your kids something to look forward to. We can’t wait to have you on board!

Calling All Kids!

Calling All Kids!

Another school year has come to an end and your little darlings are home again – FOR TWO WHOLE MONTHS! What’s a parent to do to combat the inevitable, “Mom, we’re bored!”? To make your family vacation even easier, our Kids Sale is back! For trips now through August 31, 2016, kids get a discount of 50% off on any overnight trip and 25% off on any one day tour when you travel with Starr!


Guests take the plunge and cool off after they Escape from Pompeii® at Busch Gardens® Williamsburg. ©2013 SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Guests take the plunge and cool off after they Escape from Pompeii® at Busch Gardens® Williamsburg. ©2013 SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Busch Gardens, Williamsburg has been awarded “World’s Most Beautiful Theme Park” every year since 1990 by the National Amusement Park Historical Association. “NAPHA Historian Jim Futrell says, ‘Members have long praised Busch Gardens Williamsburg for its amazing setting with its world class thrill rides and attractions surrounded by detailed European theming all nestled into a lush, rolling, forested landscape.'” Add in their other awards of “Cleanest Park,” “Best Shows,” and “Best Food,” and it is no wonder that this park is one of America’s top destinations. Your kids are going to love their thrilling rides, safari ride, characters and more, and you’ll love that you are making family memories in a unique and diverse setting with plenty of opportunities for learning and fun! This two-day overnight trip, is jam-packed with fun and adventure for the whole family and also includes Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museum and free time in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor!



The Assateague Explorer views wild ponies on the beach. Photo Courtesy of Assateague Explorer

A visit to Assateague Island  is an experience your family will cherish for years. On this wonderful day trip your getaway will begin with lunch at Philip’s Crabhouse where it is chicken or fish for you, and kid friendly menu options for them. Then, you’ll climb aboard The Assateague Explorer for an exciting eco-cruise with a professional naturalist. Learning about Assateague’s unique coastal eco-system is made fun with an on-board touch tank and hands on activities. You may even get a glimpse of the famous wild ponies! Afterwards, round out your perfect summer day with a trip to Ocean City’s boardwalk lined with shops, eateries, and amusements. Be sure to pack your camera and get ready for a great day! And for your young readers, the book “Misty of Chincoteague” by Marguerite Henry is a fantastic children’s novel to get them psyched about the trip.




Home to the Smithsonian Visitor Center, the Smithsonian Castle is your perfect first stop in discovering all that the Smithsonian Institution has to offer.

Feed your child’s natural curiosity with a trip to Washington D.C.’s Smithsonian Institution. We will drop you off on the National Mall between the US Capitol and Washington Monument. Then, the day is yours to explore all that the museum complex has to offer. No matter what your child’s interest is, there is something for everyone as you choose to visit The Air & Space Museum, The American Indian Museum, Natural History Museum, American Art Museum, Portrait Gallery, Postal Museum, African Art Museum, The Anacostia Community Museum, American History Museum Hirshhorn Museum, or Sculpture Garden and you’ll find plenty of kid activities in each one. If you’d like to have a little more time in DC, then try the DC 3-day trip! This is perfect for the whole family. Visit the towering monuments and the touching memorials as you explore the nation’s Capitol.




Virginia Beach has it all from amusements to history along a pristine stretch of sandy beach.

Summer isn’t summer without at least one trip to the beach. Why not pack up the kids and their buckets and sand shovels and check out beautiful Virginia Beach this year?  You can spend a relaxing day on the beach, walk or rent a bike to experience their three-mile long boardwalk, take a surfing lesson, visit a water or amusement park, visit historic landmarks, and so much more! Plus, you’ll spend this three day vacation staying at a great hotel located right on the beach! Whatever your passion, the sun-filled skies and coastal charm are sure to make this the perfect getaway.




Whatever a vacation sounds like to your family, there is definitely something for everyone at Starr. Take advantage of this awesome deal to save big on any of these trips while it lasts! Your next getaway starts here:

The details:

  • 25% OR 50% OFF discounts apply only to children 18 and under.
  • Overnight tours: Must include 2 full-price adults in the same room to offer 50% off the child price; Max of 2 children at 50% off. When there is only 1 full-price adult, the first child would be 25% off.
  • One-Day Tours: Must have 2 full-price adults with the booking to offer 25% off child; Max of 2 children at 25% off. With only 1 full-price adult, children can save 10% off the child price (or regular price if there is no child price).
  • Discounts cannot be combined with any other discount. Cannot apply this discount to existing bookings. Excludes Fly and Cruise trips as well as any trip 6 days or longer.