Nothing says summertime like road tripping or jet-setting to a sunny destination with your family. From soft, sandy beaches to fun, outdoor water parks, there are loads of vacation options and travel styles to appeal to any type of traveler. Whatever trip you choose, be sure to take time to unplug and connect with each other and avoid unexpected expenses that can ruin the vacation budget.  These companies offer options that can enhance your next vacation.

Successful Summer Vacation

Summer Road Trip Tips

Photo courtesy of Karyn Locke/Road Trip TravelingMom

My family and I road trip thousands of miles each year (especially when summer weather hits!), I’m all for easy and convenient ways to keep us fed, happy and ready for vacation fun from the minute we walk out the door.

The first key is keeping everyone entertained. We use audio books and tried and true games that never go out of style, like the license plate game and I Spy. Even older kids and adults can have fun with those. Hey, if you get tired of tried and true you can always play Truth or Truth – just start asking questions! If you get a little goofy, it’s always more fun.

A successful summer vacation means a ton of planning, too. Planning pit stops, meals, and even protection in case of an unexpected event before or during the trip.

Eating on the Road

Wendy's Strawberry Fields Salad

How many times have you heard, “Mom, I’m hungry!” shouted from the back seat of the car on summer road trips? Whether it’s 10 hours or 10 minutes into the trip, the easy thing to do is to find the nearest freeway exit, order, and keep moving, so Wendy’s is a good option.

This summer, Wendy’s is offering its limited-time Strawberry Fields Chicken Salad, a yummy option for summer! They are prepared in the restaurant with fresh sweet California strawberries, honey-roasted sunflower seeds, bacon and grilled chicken breast, it’s a great option on a road trip or to pack on the plane.

Slow Down the Pace with a Snack

Skinny Cow If you want to indulge – because it is a vacation after all – try Skinny Cow candy and ice creams or the new Skinny Cow Creamy Iced Coffees. They are a refreshing when it’s warm outside

Rather than pay $25 for ice cream cones for the family, sometimes I will stop at the grocery store and pick up a whole box of ice cream bars or sandwiches that we can share.

Preparing for Your Next Vacation

Allianz Trip Insurance

According to the sixth annual Allianz Vacation Confidence Index (it measures how confident consumers are that they’ll take a summer vacation and how much they intend to spend), more American families are planning to take a summer vacation in 2015 – but they plan to spend less on their travel. That means families are looking for value and that people are looking for ways to get the most out of their vacation. That includes deals and bargains and also trip protection.

Oftentimes, to get the best deals on summer travel, you need to book several months in advance. Between the time you book and your actual vacation, the unexpected can pop up, forcing families to cancel vacation plans and lose precious cash.

To protect your investment, add a travel insurance plan to your vacation budget. Allianz has different products to fit different budgets and Allianz Global Assistance will reimburse prepaid deposits and expenses if you have to cancel your trip due to illness, injury, or other unexpected situation covered by your policy. That will give any parent  peace of mind.

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Wendy’s, Skinny Cow and Allianz but I really do like the Strawberry Salad at Wendy’s, Skinny Cow fudge bars and I have bought travel insurance for various trips.