Most Parents Want Summer to End After Just 13 Days, Survey Shows

The survey found that more than half of parents are stressed out after two weeks of trying to plan activities.  

Suntanned mom in pool with kids
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Even the most studious kid looks forward to the warm, quiet, fun-filled days of summer. But while a time-out from academics might be beloved by students everywhere, their parents are less than thrilled by the season. A new survey of 2,000 moms and dads, conducted by OnePoll and commissioned by Groupon, aimed to look at just how parents plan for (and cope with) summer break, and they got real about just how stressful those classroom-free months can be.

The parents surveyed shared that it takes them less than two weeks to start feeling stressed out. On average, it took 13 days for parents to wish their kids were back in school. A major issue highlighted by parents: More than half (58 percent) are stressed trying to keep their children busy. They say they want activities to fit the following criteria: it involves quality family time, is it cost effective, it teaches kids something new, it is a good balance of fun and culture, and it will be something they can talk about when they go back to school.

It seems that even if their activities check all these boxes, parents are worrying that the agenda they land on isn’t enough. Three out of five parents are worried their summer plans won’t live up to kids’ expectations. Sixty-four percent of parents admitted they feel like they’ve let their kids down because their summertime experiences weren’t on par with other families’.

Nonetheless, parents surveyed said kids are most entertained by a trip to a local amusement or water park, a movie, the zoo, bowling, or camping.

Brian Fields, Groupon’s head of things to do, offered further insight in a press release: “Parents love spending time with their kids, but it’s totally normal to experience some stress and anxiety when planning all the fun that you’re going to have together this summer. The parents we interviewed said they’ve found the most success by not overthinking the situation and turning to affordable activities in their local community.”

No matter how you decide to fill summertime with your kiddos—and how stressful it might feel to plan it all, most parents—75 percent, to be exact— are more than ready for their children to hit the books at the end of the season. So if any of these feelings ring true for you, take heart: You’re definitely in good company!

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