Planning a Large Family Getaway | Great Escapes OBX

Great Escape's Step-by-Step Vacation Planning Guide

Great Escapes is locally owned and operated, providing your family expertise and experience. 
Planning can seem intimidating, but we are here to help! 
This page will help you think about every step as you plan your next large family getaway. 

6 months out: 

1. Schedule your dates

Now is the time to figure out when the kids are off school, or when you can take time off work. 

2. Choose an OBX town

Southern Shores, Duck, or Corolla? There is something special about each one! 

Here is some great information about all three. 

vacation planned on calendar | Great Escapes OBX

3. Determine group size and budget

How many people are going to join you in the vacation house this year? Great Escapes OBX  rentals can accommodate up to 18 people! 

4. Research vacation rentals

Browse through our exclusive selection of OBX vacation rentals, With homes ranging in size and price, we have a rental that will accommodate your family and your budget. 

Browse Vacation Rentals
See World | Great Escapes OBX 

5. Book your beach house

Once you have looked around, just choose your family’s favorite beach house, and book it! Now you are on your way to creating beautiful vacation memories that will last a lifetime. 

Booking directly through Great Escapes will ensure that you get the best price and service. We will work with you to make sure you have an outstanding vacation and we can answer all of your questions! 

Email Us

booking direct online | Great Escapes OBX

6. Buy Travel Insurance

It's important to protect your vacation investment! We know, it seems like just one more unnecessary expense, but Great Escapes strongly recommends all of our guests purchase travel insurance, as no refunds will be offered, even in the case of a mandatory hurricane evacuation.


Learn more about Travel Insurance
travel insurance form with starfish | Great Escapes OBX

3 months out: 

1. Plan your activities 

There is so much to do on the Outer Banks. We recommend doing some research before you arrive so that you can make the most of your time here. 

It will also help you pack properly if you know that you will be doing certain activities (like fishing). 

Things to do in the Outer Banks
Corolla Adventure Park | Great Escapes OBX

2. Make a packing list

This is the part that can stress out even the most organized planner! So start making your list early and get prepared. Even better, use our OBX Essentials page to help you remember everything. You can even download our perfect packing list and just add your personal touch! 

OBX Essentials: What to Bring
printable packing list for the beach | Great Escapes OBX

3. Do some meal planning

We suggest making a basic outline of what you will want to eat while you are on vacation! Coordinate with the rest of your travelers. 

You can purchase items at our local grocery stores, but bring snacks and drinks from home to get you started. Don't forget to schedule some nights out at our fabulous restaurants! 

Read about our favorite restaurants
woman meal planning in a journal | Great Escapes OBX

1 month out: 

1. Book a kennel or pet sitter

If you are bringing your dog with you on vacation, that's awesome (print and pack their vaccination records).

If you are leaving pets at home, make sure to arrange a kennel or pet sitter far in advance so you can get a spot. 

See our pet friendly rentals
dog being walked | Great Escapes OBX

2. Prepare your vehicle

Get that oil change, check those tires. Replace worn windshield wipers.

Buy a car-top carrier if you don't have one already. They are super useful for a beach vacation!

Put an easy-to-clean trash receptacle in the car. 

Freshen up your first aid kit for the car. Check your spare tire. 

3-7 days out: 

1. Print your itinerary 

Or save it to your phone. Make sure you review the check-in procedures for your rental. 

2. Pack your bags

Put the car-top carrier on the roof rack. Pack up as many things as you can to make sure everything fits. Do laundry. 

3. Confirm pet / house sitter

Stop the mail or ask a neighbor to grab it. Make sure your neighbor has a key. 
woman packing for vacation | Great Escapes OBX

day of departure:

1. Pack up final items

Don't forget chargers, makeup, glasses, children's special lovies, pet supplies, devices for the car, and last minute drinks and snacks. 

2.  Set the heat or A/C

3. Lock up the house

key in door with home sweet home key ring | Great Escapes OBX

4. Have an amazing Great Escapes OBX Vacation!