Travel Packing Tips

Are you looking for some travel packing tips to get you off to your next great vacation without forgetting anything important?

Packing for a trip is no easy matter, especially if you're packing for a family! There are the necessities, the luxuries, the carry-on bags, the toys and games if you have kids, and clothing and essentials multiplied by however many people are going on the trip. Plus, you don't want to over pack because it's harder to haul extra stuff you don't need. Besides, nowadays, airlines will charge you for bags over the maximum weight, or for having too many bags. So once again, planning ahead is extremely important! Here are a few travel packing tips.

Make A Master Packing List

I have a vacation planning and packing list that I use for every trip. It doesn't matter if I'm going to a warm weather location, or to the mountains for snow fun. It has been modified and changed slightly over the years as children were added and as their needs changed (diapers, formula, etc.). But for the most part, it's the same list I've used for years.

Of all the travel packing tips, I think this one is the most important. I highly recommend you also make a reuseable list of your own. Put together a general packing list on your computer that you can print off in a minute when you need it. It should be a list for any kind of trip and you can add or subtract things as needed for a specific trip once you print it out. It's a great time saver to not have to recreate this list every single time you travel. Besides, if you had to start from scratch every time you traveled, you might forget to put something on your list. But if you work from the same list every time, you can modify it each time until you perfect it!

Travel Light

Bring only what you need. Plan to do laundry if it's feasible on your trip. Use your packing list and don't add lots of extra last minute things. Unless you're traveling somewhere remote, you can purchase most items you might need in an emergency. Over packing can be troublesome in many ways. The more you pack, the more you have to carry around and it can be downright tiring. The more bags you have, the more to keep track of and worry about getting lost. With young children it's just plain difficult. We travel with a portable playpen for the youngest to sleep in, we have a stroller, and the two car seats. Right there are four giant items we can't wait not to have to bring with us anymore. Yes, sometimes you can get a crib at your destination, or rent a stroller at theme parks, and even rent car seats (for the price of buying a new one). So you have to see what's available and decide if the price is worth not having to carry these items.

Check Baggage Policies

Nowadays, this is the second biggest travel packing tip. Whether you're traveling by plane, train or cruise ship, it's a good idea to check baggage policies. They seem to be changing a lot these days too, especially with the airlines. It's a good idea to find out how many bags are allowed per paying person, the weight allowed, any extra fees for additional items or weight, and what exactly is ok to bring on the plane. By checking ahead, you may be able to avoid any extra fees.

Check Airport Security Requirements

If you're planning on flying, be sure to check the TSA website for the latest regulations for flying. This includes what you can and can't take with you in your carry-on bags. Going through security is difficult these days, especially if you have children and lots of gear. Also make sure that if you plan to lock your suitcases that you only use the TSA approved locks, or your locks may be cut opened for inspection. So find out ahead of time what you need to do to make it go as smoothly and easily as possible.

Label Your Luggage

It's important to label your luggage with your name and telephone number both inside the bag and outside. We also like to include the address and phone number of our destination on our luggage for the trip out there.

Enjoy Your Trip

That goes without saying! And hopefully these travel packing tips helped you get there with everything you needed.


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