Let’s face it: group holidays are more popular than ever. If we’re not dreaming of a once-in-a lifetime holiday with all our favourite people, we’re planning a surprise party for a loved-one and with everyone there. Or we’re thinking of getting all our nearest and dearest together for the ultimate family reunion. But lots of people in one space can be a recipe for disaster. Plus there’s plenty of potential for real group holiday problems. So, if you’re thinking of a grand get-together read this first.

9 incredibly real group holiday problems

1. Arriving at the accommodation and realising there’s going to be blood shed over who gets the four-poster

group holiday problems - four poster bed in luxury scottish castle

Firstly, let’s be realistic and remember why we’re all here: to sleep in the luxury four-poster bed. Then, let’s get practical and allocate the accommodation:

A good solution: draw lots before you arrive.

A better solution: let the oldest or most important person (birthday girl/boy, happy couple…) bag the best bed.

The best solution: book accommodation with more than one four-poster or fabulous bedrooms for everyone.

2. Being the last to get up in the morning and finding there’s no milk left for breakfast

how milk, or a lack of it, can be an incredibly real group holiday problem - black coffee cup

Stay cool – you are on holiday after all. Now, where’s the nearest village store…

A good solution: drink your tea/coffee black and have toast instead of cereal.

A better solution: remember that as long as there’s still coffee, no one will die.

The best solution: treat yourself to breakfast out.

3. Finding a suspicious hair on the soap while showering and mentally matching it to Uncle Steve

soap and wash bowl shouldn't cause group holiday problems

We all have hair at least on some parts of our body and we’re all family on this group holiday. To avoid the grimmest of group holiday problems, be brave and deal with the rogue.

A good solution: pretend you haven’t seen it.

A better solution: throw away the bar of organic lavender soap.

The best solution: book holiday accommodation with en-suite bathrooms for everyone (or at least for you).

4. Discovering a new memory technique for remembering who wants what when you make the next round of cuppas

making tea and coffee shouldn't create real group holiday problems

A cup of tea should be the answer to any group holiday problems that crop up, except maybe this one. Waiter’s pad at the ready, let’s sort out this milk with two sugars lark.

A good solution: put the ones with sugar at the back of the tray or on the left. Or on the right.

A better solution: label all the mugs when you arrive at your holiday accommodation.

The best solution: take in the teapot, mugs, milk and sugar, and let everyone serve their own.

5. Uncle Steve getting his guitar out at every opportunity

man playing guitar could create real group holiday problems

There’s no accounting for taste. Let’s get practical and deal with the darned strumming.

A good solution: grin and bear it (he is family after all).

A better solution: think about uploading the family’s London’s Burning singalong to YouTube or Spotify.

The best solution: book holiday accommodation that’s big enough to get away from the guitar playing.

6. The realisation that Grandma’s weak bladder is now everyone’s problem

public toilet signs

As group holiday problems go, this isn’t the most pleasant. That said, Grandma is old enough to be allowed to go to the loo more often than the rest of you. It’s time to plan bathroom breaks into the holiday.

A good solution: keep the supply of cuppas down and not just for Granny, for everyone. No need to remember who has what or factor in the loo stops.

A better solution: when you arrive at any tourist attraction make your first question, “Where are the loos?”

The best solution: share loo duty among you – after all, it’s now everyone’s problem – and keep the supply of cuppas down.

7. Finding your innocent 6-year-old playing The Walking Dead on the X-Box with his teenage cousins

xbox games controller

No one stays innocent for long, so let’s get on and solve the zombie problem.

A good solution: remind yourself that your older cousins enlightened you when you were little and that when you were older you did the same with your little cousins.

A better solution: book holiday accommodation with children’s activities that are so appealing – think outdoor play areas, table football… – that your 6-year-old won’t have eyes for the X-Box.

The best solution: accept that nothing can prepare you for the inevitable questions over the dining table about whether school would stay open if there really was a zombie apocalypse. Then get your answer ready.

8. Getting home and unpacking to discover you’ve got someone else’s t-shirt in your luggage


This was a fun holiday when everyone let their hair down, what’s an item of clothing between friends…

A good solution: stuff it in the bin and pretend you haven’t seen it.

A better solution: bundle in the laundry and when clean and dry, see if it fits…

The best solution: tell no one and ask no questions.

9. Appreciating how much you love your friends and family, with all their quirks and personalities

family of frogs

Ignore the top ten areas of tension on a group holiday, this is the best solution of all (and why you organised the group holiday in the first place!). No group holiday problems here!

Ready to embrace a group holiday with all its fun and games? Browse our collection of large holiday houses (some with more than one four-poster-bed and lots with plenty of bathrooms) and book your once-in-a-lifetime occasion.