Packing for a family holiday – Top 5 tips to teach your kids to pack for vacation
It is also a great opportunity to spend quality time together! If you are looking for activities for the time on the road, you can read my earlier post and download a train scavenger hunt template as well 😉
While in “travel vibe” it becomes natural to slowly teach kids how to take responsibility for their belongings, how to think a bit ahead, organize ideas aaaaand how to pack their own luggage…
So here come 5 tips and a family vacation packing list template, that worked for us pretty well during our previous trips:
1. Find the right luggage
For shorter trips, an own backpack is a great start. A bottle of water and some snacks and toys can fit in – and should not become heavy. We even have small backpacks for bike trips around the neighborhood. I suggest making kids carry their own belongings as soon as possible. Obviously, this does not mean that you can not help when they are climbing on some trees or simply getting tired, but feeling the responsibility and the load will teach them early what to focus on when packing – and also that if they forget something, that will be forgotten…
For longer trips, they can have their own trolley bags. Various brands, sizes, and colors are available. What can be a great idea is to let them choose one, which is not too big, so even when packed they will be able to pull it.
A combination of backpack and trolley is also possible, but in this case, they would need some additional instructions about what goes where. 😊
2. Give them a packing list
What we always pack first is a water bottle – and some snacks 😅
But it is nice to have some guidance that helps your Little One. I prepared this vacation packing list template that can be used in order to focus their attention on the necessary items to collect before packing while giving them the autonomy to choose which exact ones they prefer. For older kids, the number of each item can be written on the lines – but for smaller kids, it is also an option to draw as many dots as they will need to pack.
You can buy this cute packing list along with others in my Etsy shop!
3. Use packing cubes
I am personally in love with packing cubes 😅
Before having separate luggage, I used different colors of packing cubes for each family member, so it became a lot easier to organize and find what we needed.
If you teach your kids how to roll or fold the clothes in a “konmari-style” they will get the cubes perfectly organized and just need one more step to put them all in the trolley bag.
4. Be selective
It is difficult. Honestly even for adults, limiting the things to those we really need when packing for vacations is a real challenge. But with the packing list and making them carry their own bags, it will help to be selective.
Just have some calm moments before packing, think about the programs you plan and the way you travel… and amend the list accordingly.
If your kid is older, try to suggest selecting tops and bottoms that can be matched in various ways – for smaller ones everything is matching, so you do not need to waste time with such issues 😁
Try to stick to the plan and do not overpack… but if that 2nd teddy is reeeeeally important, you might make an exception 😊
When the bag is packed, do not forget to celebrate! I mean really, it is such a great feeling, congratulate to your Little One for doing a great job, you are now ready for the vacation!✅😀
And if you are looking for some hints on how to plan an adventure vacation with kids of any age, just check this post of Chasing Advntr! ?😉
Teaching the kids to pack for themselves when leaving for vacation not only improves their skills but will also make the parents’ life a bit easier.