Hello I’m Jordan. And I’m an over-packer. I’ve always been this way; packing for every type of weather, taking full bottles of shampoo for one weekend, and having my suitcase bursting at the seams when I close it.
(Pictured above: Our trip to Texas the previous Summer where I thought packing a whole separate suitcase would be a good alternative. Try dragging that thing around airport after airport…)
The first trip we took after having our son was hard for me. Not because I was afraid he’d get cranky or because we’d be on a germ infested airplane, but because it meant I would have to pack both my things AND my son’s in ONE suitcase!
We travel often enough that I had to learn the hard way, through trial and error, how to efficiently pack for the two of us.
- Start with the basics. Pack staple items first. Things that you can wear with multiple outfits (like a jean jacket or a black tank top).
- Pack for the number of days you’ll be gone PLUS 3. I used to think I needed twenty different outfits for my son because as we all know, babies and toddlers are MESSY! But remember, chances are, wherever you’re staying, there should be a washing machine nearby. Having just 2-3 extra outfits will give you peace of mind without taking up too much space.
- Skip the full sized bottles. Don’t pack those huge bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, etc. Instead splurge a couple of bucks to get the mini bottles you can fill yourself, or the pre-filled travel sized bottles. That way they aren’t taking up as much space and you don’t have to worry about a MAJOR goo explosion in your bag.
- Wear your bulky shoes. I’m a runner so I’ll need my tennis shoes on the trip. To save space I’ll wear those while packing my lightweight sandals. This will leave room to pack my son’s nice shoes while he wears his play shoes on the plane.
- Don’t pack what you can buy once you get there. For example, I know I’ll need diapers for the plane ride but we only need enough to get us to our destination. Why take up a bunch of space by stuffing extras in my suitcase when we can just buy it there. (Other things this can apply to are wipes and sunscreen)
- An EMPTY sippy cup. I’m notorious for forgetting I have sunscreen or a full sippy cup in my diaper bag while going through security and I’m ALWAYS stopped for it. Not this time. Oooo no, not this time.
That wraps up my list! A simple yet effective packing strategy for our upcoming trip with our toddler. Wish us luck! To follow our Houston adventures check us out on Instagram!
What’s the best tip you can give for moms packing for kids?
Flying this Summer with your kids? Check out my experience of Flying with Kids (the Reality).