How to Create Safe Family-Friendly Tours During Quarantine
With a sluggish season for the travel industry and many states issuing stay-at-home orders, you might be wondering if it’s possible to create safe, family-friendly tours to keep your business flowing and your community moving.
The good news is, with some careful planning and precautions, you can still do both! Here, we’ve highlighted a few points to keep in mind for your tours in the time of social distancing.
Adhere to Official Guidelines
Though this may seem like an obvious step, ensuring that your tour takers have a seamless and worry-free experience will go a long way toward not just providing quality service for them, but also garnering excellent reviews and drawing in more users for you.
Keep in mind that guidelines are fluid and bound to change, so be sure to update your tour as needed.
The safest tours will require little to no activity or interaction with other people. In general, tours that are centered around running, walking, or biking are likely to be a safe bet provided you are sticking to paths less traveled. Remind your customers to have their masks handy, just in case.
Offer Driving Tours
A great way to cover more ground, expand your area of exploration, and get some sightseeing in all while avoiding large groups is a driving a tour. Like a road trip, but on a smaller scale, a driving tour can take your customers on a rediscovery of their own city or neighborhood, introducing them to new locations that they had yet to discover on their own.
Avoid Groups of People
This is the perfect opportunity to drum up all of those off-the-beaten-path spots you know and share them with your audience. Avoid the hot spots and tourist locations, and instead share your knowledge of the cool, quirky, and cultural sites that are often more low-key and tend to fly under the radar.
Those buildings with a great architectural story. That path which strays just off the more popular one, and is begging to be trekked. That one neighborhood with homes that have interesting or unusual histories. The more obscure the place, the less likely it is for your tour takers to encounter groups of people, and the more engaged and interested they’ll be.
And while you’re at it, avoid places and activities that may not be overly crowded, but will still encourage contact with public surfaces. A park, for example, may seem like a great family-friendly activity, however, communal play areas such as slides and swings such should be avoided.
Consider the Youngest Members of Your Audience
When catering to families with small children, you’ll want to include plenty of visually engaging stops with short distances in between in order to keep the little ones, who tend to have shorter attention spans, entertained. Trails with plenty of bird or wildlife spotting could be a popular option.
A great personal touch is to add activities kids will enjoy such as I-Spy or Out & About Bingo to your tour. Preselect objects to highlight on your tour and add them as clues for an I Spy game.
Alternatively, create printable Bingo cards with items families might encounter on their tour or a themed visual scavenger hunt. While small and easy to execute, these gestures will add a creative touch to your tours that are sure to keep families interacting with your tour.
Meanwhile, families with older children or teenagers may be more interested in history, fun facts, street art, and the like.
Hit the Trails
Once you’ve checked local guidelines and regulations, feel free to create tours that include hiking or biking trails in public or local parks that are open in your area. To ensure that these types of stops deliver a safe experience for your tour takers, we recommend using the tour description section to suggesting the lesser trekked trails, which are often less popular for a reason. Perhaps they don’t have the best views, or the experience is shorter or less challenging.
It’s your job to make these just as appealing, if not more so, than their popular counterparts, so don’t be afraid to include tips and suggestions for underrated viewing spots or points of interest in the tour description.
Offer Safety Tips
While you are not expected to be an expert, and your advice should never contradict or supersede those of health or public officials, it is a great gesture to offer safety reminders and information for your tour. Remind tour takers to bring hand wipes or hand sanitizer. Be upfront about any social interactions they may encounter on your tour. Be clear about the age and activity range that your tour is most suited for.
Though we are staying indoors more than ever these days, we all still need a bit of nature and exercise in our lives. And as long as you can find safe, family-friendly ways to provide your community with an opportunity to head outdoors while still adhering to health and social distance guidelines,
they'll be happy to take you up on your offer.
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