Tag Archives: Tips

All the packing tips you will ever need

Do your attempts at packing look like this? Is the thought of packing enough to put you off going away? Determined not to let the thought of packing get in the away of our family going away ( a lot! ) I have put together the ultimate list of packing tips.

Buy some plastic crates to pack food – Ok so I was very slow on the uptake here. Some of my friends have been using them for years and when we got some I could see why. No more squashed food on arrival, husband likes the way they fit in the car, if the place you are staying doesn’t have enough cupboard space the crates can be stacked in the kitchen. Get different coloured ones so you can pack different things in different ones ( if we are making lunch out and about on a travel day I put the things I want into a specific colour so we can find it easily ). If you don’t want to buy crates, you could always get some empty boxes from the supermarket.

Chilly bin – buy the best quality chilly bin that you can. We spent years using the old-style chilly bin and they do an OK job but recently we invested in a ‘fishermans chilly bin’ and we reckon we have made the money back on what it cost us, with savings in food going off. The ice lasts so much longer and also less ice-melt means everything in the bottom doesn’t get soggy.

Buy sleeping bags for the kids – again I was very slow on the uptake here. Hate to think of the time we have spent making beds when we have gone away and it was only when we were going away in our camper for 3 weeks and faced making up beds every few days that I thought to get sleeping bags. Added bonus…kids don’t get cold with blankets falling off. Unless you are planning to go camping in winter they don’t have to be expensive ones.

Packing list – so this might be an obvious one but I have a list, especially useful when the kids were young and there was a lot more to remember and I had a lot less ability to think. I have a different list depending on where we are going; camping, bach, mountain biking etc.

Leave toilet bag packed – OK so I have quite a lot of sh*t in my toilet bag but there is nothing worse than being away and not having the medication you need or forgetting your sunscreen. I have almost everything I need in my toilet bag and just use things out of there when I am at home or buy two lots of things ( e.g. eye drops, deodorant ) and leave one lot packed.

Leave medication packed ( pamol, kids cough mixture, vicks, sunscreen, insect repellent etc ) – my kids don’t get sick very much but there is nothing worse than being away and having an unwell child and no access to a pharmacy.

Leave some kids activities packed – depending on where you are going the kids might not have the same things to play with at home (i.e. no internet connection ) so we leave activity books, cards, small games, white boards and markers packed in a bag ready to go. Its in the lounge if they want to play with things at home too.

Get the kids to pack for themselves – give them a list if necessary. Just tell them to pack for number of days away. Then they do most of it and you can add a few bits and pieces.

Grocery shopping – I like to do the grocery shopping the night before we go ( or maybe two nights before we go ).  Then I just pack it into crates in the garage and it’s good to go. Saves double handling unpacking half the food into the house.

Food – Have a ‘set menu’ that you cook every time you go away. e.g. If we are going to Rotorua mountain biking ( we go about once a month ) we have homemade hamburgers on the first night, shared dinner with our friends the second night etc.

Buy a single story house – we go downstairs to our garage and it sure does keep us fit when packing the car.

Pack in stages – just like with the groceries I start getting things out the day before and then as I go down the stairs during the day take a load of stuff with me.

If you have a small car consider buying a roof box – my husband loves trademe and got a good deal for a roof box and the roof racks you need to fit it. A great gain in space and makes the car more comfortable if its not crammed.

Find a husband that can fit a lot of stuff in to the car – OK so this might not be possible but I am so lucky that my husband is so good at packing the car. In fact its an art form! Lucky he is so good coz you know that saying about everything but the kitchen sink, well they were talking about me!