Family Matters: Tips for Planning a Summer Family Reunion


(BPT) - Did you know the average family spends less than an hour of quality time together per day? According to data from Pew Research Center, nine in ten people indicate that spending time with family is one of the most important things to them, but it can be difficult to prioritize.

Reunions can be the missing piece that helps families reconnect to share family history and traditions, creating a sense of belonging that is hard to replicate. While family reunions can have a positive impact on well-being, they can also be a daunting task. AARP members can unlock an abundance of discounts that make a memorable reunion that everyone will talk about for generations to come.

”Some of the longest standing traditions that families have are their reunions, which come in all shapes and sizes from small annual gatherings, to once in a decade parties,” said Steve Guilday, AARP Services Travel Director. “Because families don’t always live in the same city, these events require a lot of coordination and often double as a summer vacation. Taking advantage of existing membership discounts like those available for AARP members can make reunion travel and execution more financially friendly for all.”

Prepped and Primed

Whether bringing together a group of 30 or 300, family reunions require a good dose of planning. With so many moving parts — flights, hotels, transportation — the AARP Travel Center Powered by Expedia is the perfect one-stop shop for creating a seamless itinerary. Members save up to 10% on select hotels, 30% off car rentals from Avis and Budget and receive a $50 gift card with any flight package.

For out-of-town families, it’s nice to have the option to book a dependable rental car at a discounted rate to shuttle everyone around comfortably for planned activities. AARP members save up to 30% off base rates or up to 35% when selecting Pay Now and receive a 3% credit to apply to rentals within 12 months when booking a car with Avis. Plus, you get an upgrade on compact through full-size car class bookings, an additional driver at no cost, and more.

Location, Location, Location

Where families stay for the reunion can directly influence their overall enjoyment. Look for hotel options that are not only conveniently located by the event venue or airport, but near other areas to enjoy such as the local downtown area or parks.

Where Furry Friends Are Welcome

Families come in all shapes and sizes and for many, family includes pets. Many pet owners take their beloved animal along for travel, making pet-friendly lodging crucial. Remember to ensure for families with pets that there will be four-legged-friend approved hotels, particularly ones that can share a list of local pet-friendly wineries or breweries, restaurants, hiking trails and dog parks.

Thankfully, with your AARP member benefits, you and your pets are covered.

One pet-friendly option is Choice Hotels®, which offers more than 3,500 pet-friendly properties globally; AARP members can save 10% on their reservation and some locations may offer extra amenities such as pet food, food dishes, water bowls and play areas.

With thousands of pet-friendly locations worldwide, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts has the perfect accommodations for members and their loyal pets at hotels like La Quinta® by Wyndham and Baymont® by Wyndham. AARP members can save 10% on the Best Available Rate at pet-friendly Hotels by Wyndham around the world.

No matter where the road takes you, pets always stay free at Motel 6. AARP members save 10% off the best available rate and can request a late checkout until 2 p.m.

A Last-Minute Helping Hand

You’ve made it to the reunion. You’ve secured your rental car and settled into your lodging. You’ve confirmed the caterer, but something feels like it’s missing. Even the most careful planners can overlook something. Whether you simply need napkins or anticipate a bigger problem like running out of food or want to stock up on snack items for your hotel room, Walmart+ is a membership that helps save you time and money. AARP members save $20 off the annual membership and enjoy benefits like free delivery from the store, free shipping with no order minimum, video streaming with Paramount+, gas savings, plus so much more.

Safe and Secure

The main focus of family reunions should be enjoying time with family, so make sure you don’t miss out on reconnecting because you’re worrying about home security while you’re away. AARP members can have peace of mind and save 5% on monthly home security monitoring with ADT™ Home Security equipped with intrusion monitoring, connected smoke and CO detection, and smart automation from video doorbells and security cameras to smart locks.

Homes aren’t the only things that need protecting, especially since most people consider pets to be just as big a part of their family as a human member. Whether you and your furbaby are at home or on the road AARP members save 10% on Fetch Pet Insurance monthly premiums for the lifetime of their pet's policy, which covers qualifying care for injuries and illnesses, emergency vet visits, prescription meds and supplements, plus boarding fees for your pet should they require hospitalization.

Although the effort and expense of organizing a family reunion may seem intimidating, AARP member benefits make it easier to save, so all you have to worry about is enjoying the magic of being surrounded by generations of family.

To learn more about the benefits and discounts for AARP members to help you prepare for your family reunion, please visit

AARP member benefits are provided by third parties. AARP receives a royalty fee for the use of its intellectual property. These fees are used for the general purposes of AARP. Provider offers are subject to change and may have restrictions.