right arrow
GUEST STUDENT OF THE WEEK: ski_racer, a high-achiever in high school, was rejected by some of the elite schools she applied to. This rejection was the best thing that happened to her as she got to choose her own path. Learn how she fell in love with her safety school, ASK HER ANYTHING!
Make sure to check out our August Checklist for HS Seniors. Consult these quick resources to get you started on the process this month.
As we work to adjust to the current reality, make sure to check out these dedicated COVID-19 resources: our directory of virtual campus tours, our directory of extended deadlines, as well as the list of schools going test optional this fall.

What was your worst vacation ever and why?


Replies to: What was your worst vacation ever and why?

  • Nrdsb4Nrdsb4 18107 replies164 threads Senior Member
    I was going to post about my worst vacation, then I read this:


    if link is behind a firewall:

    We have had a few challenging travel snafus, but I have changed my mind and realize I have been fortunate to be able to travel and travel well. No complaints after all.
    Also, please note that I'm not dogging on anyone posting here or suggesting that if no one in your party died, you have no right to relay your bad experiences here. I just happened to see this headline on another window I had open at the same time as I came on to CC. I just cannot imagine going on a much anticipated vacation with excitement, only to find life forever horribly altered only hours into the trip.
    · Reply · Share
  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn 42317 replies2284 threads Super Moderator
    Our worst trip was to Washington in 1998. DS, age 3, took a bad fall off our back steps a couple of days before we left. It was a face plant that caused EXTENSIVE bruising all over his face. It was so bad I took him to the doctor, who said he would be OK.
    So we fly to DC to meet my parents, my sister's family, and my aunt and uncle. Oh, yeah, we forgot our hanging close bag and had to stop to buy a suit and dress on the way. Dad was being inducted into the National Academy of Engineering so we had to look good, ha.
    Everywhere we went, people stared at poor DS, who looked like he'd been through a tough prize fight. One lady gave him a lollipop. I'm surprised nobody turned us in!
    It was also tough because we had a total of six kids, age 6 and under. In DC, you walk and walk and walk... Ack! We had a couple of pretty impressive melt downs - kids and adults! I remember sitting on benches with my sister as we both nursed infants - we missed a lot of museum touring.
    I was ready for a vacation after that.
    · Reply · Share
  • Nrdsb4Nrdsb4 18107 replies164 threads Senior Member
    This is actually never happened to me, but I've had many dreams where we arrived to port for our cruise (or flight to Europe or some other location) and realize when we try to check in that we forgot our passports.

    I think I've had that dream just as many times as the recurring nightmare about signing up for a college math course, only to realize the night before finals that I never dropped it and never attended.
    · Reply · Share
  • doschicosdoschicos 26835 replies269 threads Senior Member
    This thread should come with a warning about all the vomiting. I feel triggered. :grimace:

    I can't even fathom the story in post 21. Just totally heart breaking.
    · Reply · Share
  • stradmomstradmom 5235 replies51 threads Senior Member
    No bad vacations, but plenty of bad moments (although nothing like the nuclear option in #21 (which also stopped me in my tracks this afternoon).

    That time we camped next to the stream and heavy rains not only flooded it but made it next to impossible to get the car up the hill (this was after another car issue on the same trip).

    That time on the ten hour car trip it finally occurred to two PhD's that you could offer the cranky baby a pacifier when he wasn't in bed.

    That time our 4-year-old tried popcorn for the first time, overindulged, and then we left on a five hour car trip with her in the middle seat.

    · Reply · Share
  • Conformist1688Conformist1688 1240 replies31 threads Senior Member
    When I was six years old. Mother, sibling (4) and I all had a nasty vomiting bug; mine started five seconds after we started on a boat trip which couldn't be turned round. Then my grandfather died and my dad had to fly home to deal with stuff at his home, leaving the rest of us sick in a rented cottage so not even any hotel staff to help ;(

    Lots of people do die on vacation. Often it's because they are less careful about their behaviour, drinking, etc, than they wuld be in everyday life.

    @iaparent: my parents once found a small child sobbing outside their hotel room. He was convinced it was his family's room. They took him down to reception, where it was established they had the same room the floor below. Not sure if his parents had missed him.
    · Reply · Share
  • hyperJuliehyperJulie 1490 replies63 threads Senior Member
    edited July 2019
    My worst vacation stories all involve my BIL's nightmare ex. Long story short, she had a laundry-list of mostly-not-legitimate health issues and food allergies (they changed regularly depending on what she did and did not feel like eating, or how much of a scene she felt like making), she was super loud and had a constant need for validation and attention. She would also panic about everything and found every excuse to loudly complain and fret. For example, while we waited in line behind maybe 15 other people for a speed boat ride (on a boat that easily carried 50) she spent 15+ minutes loudly carrying on about how we almost certainly weren't getting on the boat, and if we did that we wouldn't be able to sit together (how tragic that would have been...).

    On our second beach trip with her (MIL was too worried about alienating her son so say she wasn't welcome, which we understood) she really outdid herself. She got into a thermostat war with H. Everyone else was hot, she insisted she was freezing and the thermostat needed to be set to precisely 73 degrees and any less she would surely die of frostbite (bear in mind it was summer and there were piles of blankets in the condo to use). When he blockaded the thermostat with his sweaty, shirtless self and offered a hug if she wanted to turn the thermostat up again (not the most mature response but the only alternative at this point was for everyone but her to be uncomfortable), she started screaming, punching, and scratching H and then barricaded herself in her room (also tried to call MIL, who was out with friends, to tell her that she had to make her son let her turn the thermostat up). I could go on and on about this particular trip but she was an absolute nightmare for the rest of the week, and BIL quietly made plans to move out of their shared apartment the moment they got home. Happily he met a wonderful gem of a woman after this who is a pleasure to be around, so family vacations are a lot more peaceful now.
    edited July 2019
    · Reply · Share
  • 123France123France 133 replies1 threads Junior Member
    December 2004 Dominican Republic. Stuck for two weeks in an all inclusive. The DR had just had a malaria outbreak before we arrived. When we arrived to the “resort”, they told us not to leave the property until we were ready to leave for the airport. They outright told us it was too dangerous. Hotel room had black mold growing on our wall. Rained the first 4 days. Ate breakfast and lunch every day with the flies. So many flies. Everything was sticky. Pool and beach way overcrowded. Lounge chairs broken. My youngest who was 4 at the time got some sort of intestinal thing and had to go to a clinic. The day we left, our plane was taxiing to the runway and stopped. Engine failure. Had to deplane in the pouring rain late at night. They put all 200+ passengers up in a seedy motel where the 5 of us slept in two queen beds. I couldn’t get out of the DR fast enough.
    · Reply · Share
  • wis75wis75 14395 replies65 threads Senior Member
    edited July 2019
    Our worst was a Puerto Vallarta all inclusive vacation. Had been to both Mexican coasts a few times before. The good- free upgrade to a two bath room. The bad - a few days in we did the free restaurant style dinner instead of the buffet. Both of us were violently ill the rest of the trip. Thank goodness for two toilets. We missed out on our second dinner. That was the year of the Chicago blizzard (it and the Egyptian crisis made Mexican news, when you are too sick to go places you watch a lot of TV)- we opted to fly to Charlotte for a night instead of an available extra night in Mexico. The trip from the airport to the hotel we had left our car had the worst snowy roads I have ever seen, days after the storm. Got our car and headed north. Finally stopped and removed a lot of snow stuck in wheel wells when they were so unbalanced I even felt the shudder in the passenger seat. Usually it would have blown off but this did not.

    edited July 2019
    · Reply · Share
  • eyemamomeyemamom 5428 replies79 threads Senior Member
    We had a few moments. Like when we were in the bvi’s and decided to take a small plane ride to Anagada Island. It was a blah kind of day trip so when we get back to the airstrip the plane wouldn’t start. They ended up needing to jump start the battery. That seemed very dicey to me. They flew another plane over to do it. I asked to go back on the other plane and they wouldn’t let me. Then there were cows that wandered onto the airstrip that wouldn’t move so they had to bring out a fire truck to spray them with water. It was a clown show.
    We took a canoe trip once and camping with the family that lives in infamy. The water levels were too low in areas. My biggest fear was falling in, it was narrow and dark and I was sure full of snakes. My dad used my boat to try and pull himself up and he flipped me. I spent the rest of the trip with wet shoes. It was buggy and uncomfortable and I really embraced the no camping after that trip.
    · Reply · Share
  • Nrdsb4Nrdsb4 18107 replies164 threads Senior Member
    @hyperJulie , wow. Sounds like your BIL's ex has a personality disorder of some kind, maybe even more than one.

    Now that she is long gone, have you ever revealed to your BIL what a nightmare you all thought she was?
    · Reply · Share
  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 10423 replies123 threads Senior Member
    Post #30 reminded me of our white water rafting epic fail. We were scheduled for a family rafting trip. Two days before, the company called to say that they were rebooking us on another trip because water levels were too low for the trip we originally booked. Turns out they rebooked us on a dam release class IV and V rapids trip. It had poured rain the entire week before and the water levels were way higher than normal. Lets just say that we did a lot of swimming that day, had to be pulled out by rescue kayakers, and took three months to heal from all the cuts, scrapes, and pulled muscles. Never again!
    · Reply · Share
  • hyperJuliehyperJulie 1490 replies63 threads Senior Member
    @Nrdsb4 We totally agree on the personality disorder front. He was well-aware of our thoughts on the matter and it's now something we gently joke with him about. He's such an easy-going guy that he was really willing to put up with a lot, and we're happy he's now with something who doesn't even come close to trying to take advantage of that.
    · Reply · Share
  • HImomHImom 36055 replies396 threads Senior Member
    The worse one I can remember was as. child. We were camping and someone made a meal for all of our multiple families in a pot of questionable origin and everyone was violently ill for several days.

    We also had a vacation that I planned where we were staying in a different national park most nights, with a longish drive to get from one park to the next. We were supposed to stay at yet another hotel to break up the long drive from south rim of the Grand Canyon to LA but the kids begged us to just drive straight there and forego the hotel, so we did. I had a lot more cooperation in planning our trips thereafter and we’ve always stayed several nights at each place since.

    Happily most of our vacations never came closer se to some of the challenges many faced in this thread.
    · Reply · Share
  • calmomcalmom 20900 replies168 threads Senior Member
    Well, here are the highlights of one --- I was 5 months pregnant & we planned a week-long car camping trip in New Zealand -- me, my former husband (FH), and then 4-year-old son. Key details:
    > FH managed to get food poisoning with the usual 24-hours straight of vomiting. (I say "usual" because the food-poisoning-while-traveling thing seemed to be rather common for him.
    > I started off with a cold that turned into pneumonia by the end of the trip, which in addition to requiring medical attention also meant that I wasn't allowed to fly, delaying our return for several days. (Fortunately, it was bacterial and cleared up with ampicillin, once we finally figured out that I really, truly did need to go in for urgent care.)
    > FH also managed to wreck the camper van we had rented -- it was driveable, but a humongous dent on the front.
    > When we finally did get home, we had been robbed by our pet-sitter-- car stolen, a check forged, and all my inherited silver gone from the apartment. Plus our dog & 4 cats had been left alone & unattended for at the time between our planned homecoming and actual arrival.

    I still adore New Zealand. (Excellent health care system; American Express paid the damages to the rental; and our stolen property & money was recovered --- so no long-term ramifications other than a traumatized cat that ran away and refused to return even after he was located. )
    · Reply · Share
  • coralbrookcoralbrook 8055 replies26 threads Senior Member
    My H decided to surprise me with a short vacation for my 40th birthday. Unfortunately, he had no idea how to plan a vacation, buy airline tickets, research hotels, restaurants, things to do. So he goes down to a local travel agent and just points to a big poster in their window.

    I get to the airport and it is revealed we are going to Cabo San Lucas. Yippee....except I am 7 months pregnant, cannot drink anything and really don’t want to waddle around in the heat in my bathing suit. It would have been fine and I would have made the best of it, but we were on some kind of package deal at a horrid cheap chain hotel surrounded by Spring Break partiers.

    That is the first, last and only time he planned one of our vacations.
    · Reply · Share
  • BunsenBurnerBunsenBurner 41472 replies480 threads Senior Member
    Sounds like a vacation my husband would plan! :)
    · Reply · Share
  • scout59scout59 3724 replies69 threads Senior Member
    Panama City Florida, August 1998. The air conditioning in our condo went out on Day 2 of our stay and was never fixed, so the whole trip was one long humidity-fest. (Looking back, were we that cheap that we just couldn't ditch the condo and pile everyone into a hotel room? Apparently we were.)

    We were vacationing with my sister and her 5-year-old D. Somehow my niece and my D (who was eight at the time) decided that they MUST go to the haunted house but they couldn't go by themselves. Of course, they both started screaming (loudly) as soon as we got inside this place - yes, it was scary, IT'S A HAUNTED HOUSE! We had to drag them through this hot, humid, loud, dark, sweltering place, and it took forever to get out. And then they wanted to go back in!

    On the plus side, no one got sick and no one vomited. On the down side, we spent a week feeling miserably hot and tired (who could sleep?) Sometimes, in my nightmares, I can sill hear my niece screaming in the Haunted House, and to this day, when one of this is complaining about the heat, some one will say, "Yes, but is it Panama City hot?"
    · Reply · Share
  • LindagafLindagaf 10992 replies592 threads Super Moderator
    As previously mentioned, the infamous Egypt trip:
    Post #13209 https://talk.collegeconfidential.com/parent-cafe/62644-sinners-alley-happy-hour-p881.html
    · Reply · Share
  • CreeklandCreekland 6892 replies93 threads Senior Member
    @Lindagaf Thanks for sharing that link! I'm one who wondered what story had spurred this, but was too lazy to look at such a long, old thread to try to figure it out. It doesn't look like a thread I'd fit in on as my comfort drink tends to be Mt Dew fresh out of the bottle - and not the Appalachian Mt Dew variety. We're not teetotalers, but we're very low alcohol consumers. H's brew of choice is Dr Pepper.

    Of course, now I'm wanting to book a trip to Egypt... We loved Jordan, but we didn't go with any sort of planned trip! We survived (and thoroughly enjoyed) the Dominican Republic this past March too, but again, on our own renting an awesome AirBnB and not at a resort.
    · Reply · Share
This discussion has been closed.

Recent Activity