Packing for Vacation WITH Kids in Just 10 Minutes

We love going away as a family – whether it’s a quick trip to the grandparents’ house, a weekend away, or a week of camping. Unfortunately, though, the majority of the packing falls on my shoulders. I don’t mind it very much, but it is very time-consuming. After a few years of this, mostly out of necessity, we came up with this packing idea that takes less than 10 minutes total- whether it’s for 2 kids or 5 kids!


Here’s what we do:

  • Have each child stand by their dresser with a backpack in their hand. Stay with the youngest to help him/her. Make sure everyone can hear you as you call out instructions.
  • Call out every clothing item to pack, one by one. “Three pairs of pants. Now, two sweaters.”  Don’t move on to the next item until you are sure each child has packed the previous one. If someone can’t find enough socks or their swimsuit, stop and help them.

This way you are certain that everyone has everything they need – enough clothes, swimsuits, or whatever special items they may need – no excuses. And you are done in less than 10 minutes.

In addition to the bonus of quick packing and ensuring everyone has everything, you are also helping your child learn how to pack! Awesome!

Do you have any packing tips to share? I can always use more!

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Marya R

I live in Bowmanville, and am a mom to four young boys - it can get a little loud in my house. I am a Christian, a part-time French teacher, a piano teacher and former homeschooler. I love finding the best deals, which will come in handy when our boys become hungry teenagers! We just moved to a house with more outdoor space, and I'm still getting used to life in the country (a walk around the block is a lot longer here!).

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  1. I love this, it’s great! Gonna have to try this next time we go on a trip!

  2. Thats a great way to get the kids to help out. I usually do travel boxes and the kids get to pick things they want to take to entertain them.

  3. I like your idea of actually calling out the names of what they should be packing!

  4. Oh wow…that’s an ingenuous idea – a much better way to save time than relying on packing individually for each child.

  5. Awesome tips! Will need to try them next time I travel!

  6. Planning a vacation with kids is always a hectic task. And, these are some great tips for packing in such a short time & in returns the kids too learn to help you out with the packing. Would try this next time with my kids!

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