I don’t think I can say this enough: I love making lists.
It’s just embedded into my soul to make all kinds of lists, and it’s always a bonus if I follow through on them 100%.
One of my favourite lists to put together is a packing list. Not so much when we were moving to our new home last year, because a moving list is oh. so. boring yet equally important to have.
(Sadly) I don’t get to do many packing lists anymore.
HB has been ‘grounded’ by Covid-19 and only travelled once this year in January before all trips were called off by the company he works for.
Last year was a whole different ballgame. He travelled quite a bit, locally and internationally, and each time when he asked me to help out with packing his bags, I did it with a huge smile on my face.
Lol, not because he was leaving, I just really enjoy doing it! We all have our little kinks, right?
Apart from packing for his business trips, I had to pack for my trip to Moldova last year (I started working on my list the day I booked my ticket – a month before my flight).
Then there are the week/weekends away that I’ve had to plan and pack for, with and without the kids. I’m just going to put it out there, in the last few years, I’ve become a good ol’ pro at this.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed when needing to pack for a business trip (or for your husband’s) or a vacation, but that is why the beautiful art of list-making exists – to make things easier.
NOTE: MAKE SURE TO FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH ALL THE COVID-19 REGULATIONS SO YOU’RE FULLY AWARE AND PREPARED.
Here are my tried out tips to organize for any kind of trip. The base line always stays the same for any kind of travel you have planned.
How to organize for any kind of trip. #travelTweet
Before you can start putting together a packing list, you need to do some research on your destination and make sure you’ve got an idea about the weather you could expect. Will you need a hat or an umbrella? Or maybe both?
If you’re going on a business trip, you’ll probably need formal as well as casual clothes. Depending on your vacation destination, will you need casual clothes for the day, and formal for dinner time?
Having all these details will help you put together your packing list for yourself/your family and make sure to cover all bases.
No matter what kind of trip you’re planning, a certain amount of electronics are coming along. Make a list of everything you need: chargers, tripods, cameras, memory storage, iPods, Kindles, and anything else you and your family might use.
I always start checking a few days before trips that everything is working well, memory card from my camera is freed up with space, my camera charged and ready. Most of these electronics I don’t use on a daily basis so as soon as I have everything charged, I already pack it into my backpack/travel bag, and mark it as one less thing to need to worry about.
You can’t go anywhere without them, right? While some accommodation types do stock a certain amount of toiletries, it’s best to know what you should take with and what could stay behind. This does help on saving with space and weight (if you’re travelling by plane).
If you’re brand specific, then you’ll end up bringing your own things anyway.
With HB travelling so often, I made sure to keep a toiletries bag of extras for him to take with so that he always had what he needed. There were times he found out about a trip a few days prior and having had all these items on hand helped with less running around to have him ready to go.
When I went to Moldova last year, I chose travel-sized items to save on space and weight, and they were enough for the two and a half week’s I was there.
Clicks and Dischem each have a wide selection of travel-sized items as well as basic things you’ll need for any kind of trip.
Two things I always pack for travel with the kids, no matter what time of the year it is: sunscreen and insect repellant.
Included in this is a small first-aid kit of basic medication you might need: itch cream, pain killers, fever medication, etc. It’s always good to have on hand when travelling to places that are situated far from pharmacies and shops that stock over-the-counter medication.
With my travels last year, I made sure to pack in medication I knew and was used to; even though I could speak the language, I didn’t want to struggle with explanations to what allergies I have if I needed to get any medication.
You can easily pack light for any trip.
Interchangeable outfits help a lot to keep the amount of clothing you take with to the minimal but still being able to have a variety.
I packed a months’ worth of clothing for my two and a half week trip to Moldova, which goes against what I just said in the previous paragraph BUT I was able to pack strategically to have everything fit well in my bags. I just love having variety, especially being so far away from home.
If you’re going to a place with laundry service, that’s great because then you don’t actually need to pack a lot of items.
If you’re going for a business trip but will need to add casual wear as well, you’ll need to decide on the ratios of the clothing to take with, so you have what you’re need and you’re not overpacked.
Travel by plane will mean you’ll need to weigh your bags beforehand and take out anything you need to while still at home. You’ll either be told to take items out at the airport (if you’re very over the weight restrictions) or you’ll need pay a fee. Be sure to check your luggage allowances with the airline you’re flying with.
Travel with kids
Rule number one: always pack in a warm jacket, no matter what season you’re travelling in. The days might be hot, but wind and rain can be unpredictable and you’ll want to make sure to have appropriate clothing with.
Our boys choose their own clothes to pack, with direction and assistance from me, while I still help Kid3 (else she won’t have anything to wear because toddler). I add an extra day outfit for her as an emergency case, again – toddler. The boys do an outfit a day, it’s enough for the duration of most of our trips, and if needed, I can just wash the dirty clothes if needed.
If you have a list of planned activities, then you might not need to take much extra things with to keep yourself, or your kids busy. I always prefer to pack in a few things from home for the kids to give them a feeling of comfort as well as keep them busy when we’re not busy with something specific.
Ideas of what to pack in:
- Reading books
- Colouring-in books
- Busy bags (easy and mess-free art and crafts)
- Paper to draw on
Toys – We don’t take with as they tend to lose them more often than not but we always let them take their favourite plush toy with to keep busy and cuddle in the evenings.
Whenever you’re planning for any kind of trip, it’s important to keep in mind how long you’re going for. Keeping the timeframe in mind will help you compile a packing list easier.
You don’t want to leave the packing for last minute and add on unnecessary stress factors to your plate.
If you’re just packing for yourself, then it’s quicker and easier to get everything you need to take with together, and with a packing list, you could easily start packing a day or two before your trip.
If you’re packing for your family, you might want to start packing at least a week earlier before your trip. I’m not saying you need to have everything packed up and ready a week before, but you can allocate a day per person and start putting together little by little. Doing so leaves the very last day before the trip open to complete the last minute packing needs, and gives you time to run through your list to make sure you have everything you need.
I hope these tips help you organize for your next solo or family trip. Remember these tips are guidelines to help you keep in mind what you need to consider and plan. Let me know if you have any other ideas on how to organize for any kind of trip in the comments!
Here’s how to organize for any kind of trip. #travelTweet
Happy planning and safe travels!
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