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On Parenting
Posted at 03:34 PM ET, 07/28/2011

From restaurants to vacations, kids are not wanted

Last week we asked you if you think more restaurants should follow the lead of a Pennsylvania restaurant and ban children.

You responded with, well, conviction.
Do you prefer to vacation with or without kids? (Meridith Kohut/Aurora Photos - The Washington Post)

No, said a sizeable minority of the hundreds of readers who commented. Children should be encouraged to partake in civilized life, they seemed to say. This was followed closely by get-over-yourself-and-accept-that-children-inhabit-the-planet-too.

The majority of responders, however, were in the “Yes,” camp, many of them identifying themselves as parents. Adults of every persuasion, it seems, want an assured break from kidville from time to time.

This opinion is not just shared by fellow On Parenting readers. The restaurant ban seemed to have fueled a full-fledged movement; if not yet in reality, at least online.

In recent days parenting sites including Babble and Shine have traded stories about how adults are feeling more free to complain about how misbehavior can ruin everything from a dinner to a whole vacation.

There is even a burgeoning travel industry devoted to coordinating no-kids-allowed trips. Leavethembehind.com is an online referral service that’s been up-and-running for over a year but has recently witnessed a surge in interest. This summer, spokesman Nick Cust said business for its calm resorts and yoga retreats is up ten times from last summer.

“The idea was born from the fact that for years the travel industry has been focused on families (and rightly so, that is where the majority of the market is) but there has always been a gap in the market for a type of service that focused on idyllic and relaxing retreats for a different type of consumer,” he wrote me in an e-mail exchange.

Cust wanted to be clear that the London-based-service does not hate children and, in fact, has been stung by critics who attack the company on that basis.

“We are not anti-children. We’re pro-families. We love children and have our own, but there is a gap in travel space for this and we’re aiming our business at these consumers,” he wrote.

It’s apparently, a smart business model.

Do you think it’s possible to actively avoid kids, sometimes ban them, but still be pro-family? Is there a hole in the market for these folks?

By  |  03:34 PM ET, 07/28/2011

 
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