Family Holiday List of Things to Pack
The New Zealand school holidays are just around the corner! Are you taking your kids away this holiday? We all know how hard it is to remember to pack everything you need, let alone when you have all the travel planning, hotel bookings, and insurance to take care of. And to top it off, you’ve got kids to get packed and ready too! We want to help you get organised so you can focus on getting excited instead of stressed. So, we’ve put together a holiday list of things to pack and some packing tips for kids for a week away with your family. You’ll be relaxing on holiday with your kids in no time!
1. Holiday list of things to pack: The essentials
Let’s begin our holiday packing list with the everyday essentials.
Packing hack 1: Roll your clothes to reduce creases and fit more in your bags.
Packing hack 2: Sort your clothes into different coloured packing cubes and divide them by type of clothes (e.g., son’s t-shirts, daughter’s shorts, toiletries). Just make sure you buy packing cubes with a clear see-through front, so you know what’s in each bag without opening them up.
Packing hack 3: If you’re planning a trip for only a week, you probably don’t need everything in your wardrobe! Only bring one top, pair of socks and underwear per day, and two pairs of shorts for the whole week (if you aren’t planning to roll around in the mud). You can always wash some clothes if you run out.
Just to be safe, bring one or two extra sets of clothes for your little one in your day bag.
- A pair of comfortable enclosed shoes each
Cold weather extras
- Scarves (these can turn into a blanket if it suddenly gets cold!)
- Warm hat
Hot weather extras
- Swimwear, towels, & wet bag
- Jandals for the beach or pools
- Travel-sized shampoo, conditioner & body wash (You won’t need the full bottle! Empty some into travel-sized bottles to save space.)
- Toothbrushes and toothpaste
- Sanitary items
- Shaving & grooming kits
- Makeup & skincare
- Nail clippers
- Laundry kit (you can take fewer things if you can wash your clothes)
Baby & Toddler supplies
Pack everything into a day bag, so you have everything you need for your tot in arms reach!
- Baby carrier, car seat, pram
- Day bag
- Nappies & swim diapers
- Extra clothes for inevitable spills and messes
- Blankets or wraps
- Infant formula
- Milk bottles and water bottles
- Dummies, sippy cups, any feeding equipment & kids’ cutlery
- Wet wipes, tissues, and hand sanitiser
- Baby powder and lotion
- Healthy snacks, food, and toys to calm your little one if they’re unsettled in a new environment
First Aid Kit and Medicines
- Allergy medicines, antihistamines, & paracetamol for kids
- First aid kit
- Insect repellent spray or band
Be Sun Smart
Slip, slop, slap, and wrap! Protect you and your kids from exposure to the sun’s UV radiation, no matter what season you’re travelling in.
- Sunscreen SPF50 – get a kid’s sunscreen and an adult one
Extra sealable and reusable bags
We love sealable bags when on holiday to keep all your bits and pieces safely separated and tidy. Always put a few in your suitcase when you’re travelling because they always come in handy!
Reusable bags are also great to put dirty laundry and wet towels in! You never know when you need to shove away everything quickly.
- Reusable bags
- Sealable bags
You’re bringing your phone and tablet, so don’t forget all your techy accessories!
- Phone & charger
- Tablet & charger
2. Travel entertainment is a must
Long flights and road trips are always dull for kids, especially when strapped into their seats for hours. They’re bound to make lots of noise if they don’t have something to keep them busy, so plan ahead with some entertainment!
Keep your kids amused in the car or on the plane:
- Download some audiobooks from Lit2Go and animated movies and TV shows from Netflix or Disney+ on your iPad or tablet device.
- Print out puzzles, colouring in, and a bunch of activity sheets from Google. Bring some coloured pencils and put them in a sealable bag, so it’s lighter for travelling with.
- A fun comic, magazine, or novel is always good for keeping your kids entertained on long-haul flights or bedtime stories. Take some picture books you can wipe clean if you’re travelling with toddlers.
- A favourite teddy bear or cuddly toy – you will lose them if you bring more than one!
- Create a family music playlist that everyone can enjoy. You could even play car karaoke if the driver doesn’t mind some off-tune singing!
- Play games like “alphabet game”, “I spy”, “road trip scavenger hunt”, and “car colour search”.
Get the kids involved!
It’s always a fun lesson to teach your kids how to pack their own bags. Plus, if your kids take care of the toys and snacks, you have fewer things to worry about!
Give your kids their backpacks, and tell them they can only take what they can carry on their shoulders. Once they’ve packed everything, get them to walk around the block with their bags to see if it’s too heavy for them.
3. Ziploc all the essential documents
If you don’t have a travel document holder, your sealable bags will come in handy!
- Tickets (download a copy on your phone just in case)
- Medical cards
- Driving licenses
- Bank cards
- Travel insurance numbers
4. Finding the best hotel accommodation
Finding the best hotel, motel, or serviced apartment is one of the most important things to tick off for any holiday. Don’t forget to book your accommodation early to get the best rates!
If you’re travelling with kids, we recommend you book a two-bedroom suite so you can have a quiet night’s sleep. You also might want to book a room with a full kitchen so you can cook some healthy meals for your family and save some money while you’re at it!