Thursday, August 1, 2013

Travelling with Kids - Preparations

Preparing for a vacation with kids can sometimes be stressful, even though I admit that there is quite a difference between starting without pressure, knowing there’s only a 2 hour drive ahead of us and check-in time at the hotel sometime between 1:00pm and 5:00pm. So far, vacation preparations for the Powell family usually consisted of hectically packing everything the night before, doing some last-minute cleaning, trying to get rid of all of our food in the fridge, and heading out at the crack of dawn to hopefully not be stuck in a huge traffic jam on the highway for three hours and miss the plane, hoping that everything would go fine and we will not have to deal with our travel health insurance in the States.

Gladly, as mentioned, this time will be so much different. But still, there are things to prepare ahead of time to not be stuck somewhere in the neck of the woods with only an insanely expensive gas station around to rely on for necessities:

  • Make sure there’s sun screen for everyone and that it has not expired.
  • Buy combination products (like 2-in-1 shampoo and shower gel) wherever possible to minimize bulk.
  • Don’t forget the swim suits.
  • Pack extra towels for going to the lake even though the hotel may provide them. Our vacation rental provides towels only once a week and it would be yucky to use the same towels for the lake and shower at night.
  • Stock up on travel games. They are usually fairly inexpensive and definitely much easier to transport than full-size board games.
  • Pack outfits for every day of the vacation plus one or two extra, just in case (depending on the age of the kids); also buy some laundry detergent paste that can be used to hand-wash some t-shirts or underwear in the sink, if necessary.
  • Bring your water-proof sheets, if one or more of the kids are not perfectly potty-trained at night yet; the hotel may not have them on stock.
  • Remember the Bunnies (or whatever bed-time friend your little one has).
  • If you plan on leaving your electronics (laptop, smart phone, etc.) behind, make sure you make a list of activities for nice and not-so-nice weather ahead of time to avoid stress later.
  • If you don’t have meals at a hotel, bring staple foods (such as jam, juice bread, breakfast cereals, coffee, or even butter, milk, and cheese if you have a cooler) and some fruit and veggies for the first couple of days. Then explore the area and enjoy the local specialties!
  • Take it easy and don’t stress too much; after all, you are not leaving civilization behind!

Even though our vacation is still a couple of days away, I wish you all a great week!


  1. I was terrified to travel with my niece even if the flight was only 75 minutes. I had no idea what to expect, thankfully it went smoothly haha.

    1. I was SO nervous before our first flight with Lily back then, and I remember the flight when we were the parents with THAT child.. It's hard to find your zen when a little girl is screaming her lungs out next to me.

  2. Good luck with your travels!!! I can't even imagine travelling with kiddos at this point!

    1. It's actually not that bad, as long as they have their bunnies ;-)