The holiday season is closer than ever. With only weeks until Christmas and New Year’s Days, excitement is in the air! However, if you are separated or divorced with children, that excitement may easily turn in to dread for trying to make the holidays work with custody and visitation. Fortunately, as part of a parenting plan or custody schedule, a holiday visitation plan should have been made. If not, there is still time to make a quick visitation plan that is effective and can be used year round. What makes an effective visitation plan for the holidays? There are many useful components to making a successful visitation schedule for the holidays. And this plan does not have to only include the end-of-the-year holidays; it should include all holidays. When you think about all holidays, it may be a bit daunting and it can be. However, if you do not detail each holiday your family celebrates, there may be confusion and stress when they come around. Personal holidays such as birthdays and anniversaries of sorts (when your child lost his first tooth or when your child got married) should be outlined in a holiday plan. Other holidays such as state and federal government issued holidays, religious holidays such as Christmas, Easter and Hanukkah and other celebratory times should be included in your plan. To make an effective holiday plan, you should also include the following:
how holidays are divided – will each holiday be divided equally or will they be split every other holiday or every other year?
how transportation and exchanges are made – which parent will pay for travel expenses and where will exchanges take place?
how events are prioritized – are there certain events that are more important for your children to attend and are you willing to give up some of your events to ensure your children attend the most important ones?
how extended family visits are done – does your extended family want to see your children and how will those visits be arranged?
what happens in case of an emergency – is there a plan in place in case an emergency happens and are you prepared for unexpected events?
what to do for parental disagreements – do you have a plan or measures you will take if you and your ex-partner disagree?
As you make an effective holiday visitation plan, remember how important holidays are for your family and what memories you will be making with them. Try not to personalize events and keep a positive attitude throughout the holidays to make them wonderful.
Are you struggling with making a holiday visitation plan? Use Custody X Change software to help you make visitation plans for the holidays, parenting plans and custody agreements.