Thursday, March 29, 2012

Traveling with kids - Packing for 4 (5 day trip)

Going to visit family after almost 3 years. I've gone back a few times, but let's face it, once you have kids family doesn't want to see you without them. We have had a few visitors ourselves, but there is nothing like having the whole family together.

The challenge here is that I am no longer packing for just me, nor am I packing teeny-tiny little clothes. I am also not the one dressing them anymore, so we need to organize in such a way that we can compactly fit everything in as few bags as possible so it reduces chaos in a traveling environment.

Enter grey hair reducer NUMERO UNO!!! - Everything has a place, and everyone has their own color.

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I have had these wonderful bags for almost 4 years, and only until lately (with older kids) have they proven their usefulness. Mom has red bags, Dad has orange (I promisse, they are not yellow, but yellow is available), Daughter has pink (could not be any other way), and Son has green.

There are 3 bags for each, in different shapes, and they help the packing process. The Big bag fits most tops and bottoms, the Medium bag fits a couple of pairs of kids shoes and pjs, and the Small one fits undies. Mom and Dad's clothes and shoes are bigger, so shoes go in separately. I have yet to buy shoe bags, but they are on my wish list.

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I also have something similar to this toiletry bag. It actually goes in my luggage relatively empty since most of my toiletries need to go into a plastic zip bag to go through security, but once at my final destination it is pretty handy to keep everything organized inside the bathroom. It comes in handy much more so on road trips when I can skip the plastic bag.

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These bags aid in using one piece of luggage to fit more than one person's belongings without much fuss. No more "Mooooommmmmm, where are my sooooocckkkkkssss!!!!!", because they know they should be in their small bag. OK, who am I kidding? I'll still get some of those, but at least this way I can tell them exactly where to look.

Enter grey hair reducer NUMERO DOS!!! - How to get around the 1 carry-on limit!!! - 1 carry on and 1 purse/backpack

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I have each one off us carry a compact backpack. Mine is a Nike backpack that can fit my laptop, my wallet (I don't travel with a purse), a few travel necessities, like a hair brush, a mirror, and tissues/napkins, and easy access to that uncomfortable toiletry bag you have to scan. I also can fit here my makeup, those shoes I mentioned didn't fit, and maybe a pair of hot styling tools. My husband and kids carry other things, like their on-flight toys (iPad, iTouches, wireless headphones, wired headphones for in-flight movies, some crayons and coloring paper, etc.).

We are master nomads, but if we ever happen to forget anything we don't fret. You can buy anything you forgot at a local store. So now, to relax and enjoy some time with family.

What traveling tips do you have?

Rossana G-A

FTC Disclaimer: I am not compensated to write this post.

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