Friday, May 2, 2014

Packing For A Family of Five: Tips & Advice

When do you start packing for your Disney vacation? I have heard people say that they start the packing process as early as a month out. Packing for my family of five is no easy task and I like to start packing about 7 to 8 days before departure day. I've learned from the past that it is no fun to stay up packing and doing laundry until midnight the night before a big road trip.

Packing the food and snacks for the vacation in my 31 tote bag

I started doing the kids laundry and the adult laundry at the 7 day mark. After everything is cleaned I lay it all out on the bed and sort out each person's outfit per day. I always over pack because with a toddler and preschooler you just never know when someone's going to have an accident or need to change into a second outfit in one day. After organizing the clothes into outfits I add each outfit to a large plastic bag and label it with the child's name on the bag and the day of the week the outfit is going to be worn. This will help the kids when we arrive at the destination and most importantly it will help ME. They will be able to easily unpack their own luggage while keeping each outfit secured together.

Excited to use my American Tourister Colora Luggage

Packing for a family takes a lot of time, organization and many check lists! I make a list of all of the items we need from the kitchen about two weeks before we depart. I always like to take snacks, juice boxes, sippy cups, etc. in a big tote bag for the actual road trip. Then I make a separate list for packing clothing and toiletries-be sure to read my tips for packing toiletries. if you haven't already.

To save as much room in the van as possible we pack the adult clothes in one big suitcase and then the girls pack their luggage in the same suitcase also. We use a small duffel for my son's clothes. Each child is allowed to bring a small backpack with whatever items they plan to use in the van during the road trip. My 6 year old always packs her Nintendo DS, Ipod & a few books to read. My preschooler packs his Tag pen and Tag books and his favorite monkey. My littlest one usually gets help packing her backpack. She will bring a few board books and her favorite kitty.

Packing Tips:

  • Always over pack and include an extra outfit for each child
  • Don't forget to leave extra room for the items you may purchase on your vacation
  • Sort each outfit out for each day of your vacation to save time each morning getting ready
  • Label and pack each child's outfit in a sealed bag to prevent confusion in the early mornings
  • Don't forget girl's hairbows, earrings and brushes, etc.
  • Always over pack diapers and wipes, it is better to have too many than not enough (learned this the hard way-on the way home from vacation last year we had a 12 hour drive and only 2 diapers left!)

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