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Packing for family holidays

Managing to organise the family to get away for a holiday is hard enough, when you add in packing everything you could possibly need, it starts getting more stressful.

Whether you’re going overseas, going interstate, or simply getting away from your own house for a day or two, making sure you have the essential items with you is important. Also, knowing how to keep kids entertained on the way to where you’re going can prove a challenge.

Regardless of your setting, you always need the right amount of clothes, the right toiletries, and all the necessities for your kids. Packing minimally is the best way to go, but you need to work out what is essential for your family.

You should have only enough clothing for each day you are gone, if you can’t wash anything, and less than that if you can wash. Also, try to avoid clothing that needs ironing; it’s easier to just dress and go. If anything gets a little dirty, then you can always hand-wash in the sink.

Remember to pack the little things that your kids couldn’t live without – their favourite stuffed toy, favourite book, and favourite blanket can mean the difference between and relaxing holiday and a nightmare from hell. New toys can also help to keep the kids entertained for longer than their toys could at home, as it’s new and exciting to have this brand new toy for the holiday.

Making sure the kids stay entertained during transit is a task, as well. A long car ride, bus ride, or plane ride without sufficient amusement is a recipe for disaster. Pack some books, for both reading and writing in, with some pencils and colours; small toys that aren’t too loud or annoying for others around you; a game console with some games that can be muted or have headphones plugged in to stay quiet; or try play dough, it can be great to keep them occupied, so long as it doesn’t get too messy.

Make sure you have refreshments handy if the kids get thirsty or hungry. Just something small, like a popper or muesli bar, to tide them over will suffice.

Check out our holiday packing checklists for beach, skiing, and camping trips to see what you need specifically for those types of holidays.

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