Holidays are wonderful, but when you have children, especially young children the very act of getting there can be a tad stressful! Packing is one of the most challenging jobs that exists when you have a young family, especially if you’re restricted to space / weight and you can’t just throw everything in and hope for the best! We’ve put together our top five favourite tips to help you out this summer.
- Make a list. Lists are a great way to plan and use time effectively and if you’re a parent with toddlers, it is amazing how the most organised person can become chaotic – especially when it comes to holidays. You can write on the go, so jot some stuff down and then put it on the fridge and add to it as you think of things, do it during nap times, once they’re in bed or during your lunch break at work. It will help you to mentally prepare for your hols and make you feel calmer, yes honesty it works! Write a list for each member of the family, and a list of items for the suitcase, hand luggage and car items. Top tip: There are lots of brilliant lists that experience travellers have already created online – you can cheat by simply printing out theirs!
- Roll up, roll up it’s time to squeeze everything into the tiny case! Rolling clothes is the most effective way to pack – you’ll be amazed at how much more you get in by rolling each item! Why not get the kids to help – you can’t go too far wrong with rolling can you? Make sure you put the items you’ll need at the top of your case, for example, if you’re going to arrive late, make sure pjs and wash bag are at the top, the rest can wait until the morning.
- Wash while away? If you’re going away for a couple of weeks, find out if there are laundry facilities at your hotel / campsite. It may seem a bit dull to do domestic jobs on your holiday but at least you won’t have to overpack for two weeks-worth of clean clothes… You could also pack some simple laundry soap or wipes, so you can easily wash underwear and socks on the go or give grubby t-shirts a quick wipe… Alternatively, you could simply take advantage of Kidunk’s new summer collection, which the kids can wear every day, no matter what the weather is like! Removable sleeves and legs means that you can make shorts and t-shirts when it gets hot and there’s no need to worry about ice-cream spills or sun cream spills, as stains and water are repelled due to the unique Teflon coating. The suits also have UPF 50+ protection, which gives you extra peace of mind.
- They’ll need less toys than you think. Because you’re going somewhere new, everything will seem exciting and they are unlikely to miss all their old toys back home. A nice idea, however, to make the journey more bearable is to introduce a new toy, colouring pens or book on the day you travel - the novelty of which should last until you reach your destination – with a bit of luck!
- Don’t forget the ouch pouch! Minor accidents, bumps and grazes are inevitable with young children, but you don’t need to let them ruin your holiday. Use a small toiletry bag and fill it with plasters, antiseptic wipes or spray, antiseptic cream, bite cream, Calpol sachets sweets. Carry this everywhere with you – hopefully you wont need it!
Still need more help? We love these tips from some of our favourite bloggers:
Tinbox Traveller: 10 smart packing tips every mum needs to know
Otis & Us: Tips for a happy road trip with kids
A mum reviews: Packing and preparing your car for a family holiday