Packing for a Family Road Trip

Going on a family road trip this summer? Find out what to bring and how to pack it, so you can have an anxiety-free vacation.

Don’t let packing stress stop you from taking the perfect summer road trip. Follow these five tips to streamline your way from to-do lists to adventure!

By Alyssa Erickson, Eagle Creek

The smell of musky redwood, the echo of young voices, flip-flop tan lines, and open roads—that is what I think about when summer break begins.

Every year we plan an epic family adventure. One year we cruised Highway 101 from California to Oregon. We slept beneath the Giant Sequoia, explored tidal pools, and played on the rugged beaches of the Pacific Northwest. Another year we explored the desert, visiting National Parks such as Zion and Bryce Canyon.

However, along with our dreams of scenic expanses, used to come a dread of packing everything and everyone into our four-wheeled adventure mobile.

But we don't panic anymore. Now, we just apply these five simple rules to streamline our way past the stress and onto the fun of a family road trip. Save yourself time and frustration by teaching your family how to pack their bags efficiently.


Organize your packing by activity:

As a jack-of-many-trades family, we tend to pack in as many activities as we can into our travels. Instead of packing by individual, we share luggage and pack by activity. Inside each bag, we organize each person’s stuff using the Pack-It™ System. These things are a game changer! For example, our everyday clothing might be in one bag while all our gear for a day at the beach might be in another bag. This limits the amount of digging that we have to do when, say, a storm hits. We can access one bag and grab everyone’s jackets easily.


Slim down your packing list:

Less really is more. We don’t actually need as much as we think we do. If ever there is a time to let your daughter wear a dress hiking and let your son wear dirty jeans again, it is on a vacation! Don’t bring the whole closet; instead, embrace a minimalistic mentality. Choose a few outfits that can be mixed-and-matched to create new outfits for multiple days.


Pack Easily Washable Items:

In a similar vein as the previous rule, I try to pack clothing that is wrinkle-free and dries quickly. Not only does this clothing work well for outdoor adventures and city exploration, but it can be easily cleaned in a sink if necessary.


Set Aside New Toys and Activities:

Packing toys and car activities is essential to traveling with children. Weeks before our trip, I start collecting and organizing crossword books, blank journals, games, and small building sets into bags such as the Eagle Creek Pack-It™ Cubes. When it comes time to pack, I can toss them in the back seat with the kids, without having to battle about which toys are or are not coming amongst our three kids.


Make Use of Spacious and Durable Luggage:

After trying a large variety of luggage, we’ve found we prefer suitcases such as the Expanse™ Flatbed 32and the Expanse™ Drop Bottom Wheeled Duffel 32, as they are big enough to hold all of a family's belongings and they stay protected from the damage that is bound to incur from road tripping. In addition, they keep our gear and clothing in place without any jostling!

Now you are packed and ready. Smiles still grace the faces of those you love the most. Essentials are packed, the map is out, and the tank is full. Go find your mountain to climb, your creek to fish, and your beach to walk! The open road awaits you.
Packing Organization


|Featured Content_$type=three$c=3$l=0$m=0$s=hide$rm=0

Made with in NYC

Abu Dhabi,3,Adventure,27,Adventure Travel,709,Advice,72,Africa,28,Air Travel,180,Alabama,5,Alaska,27,Albania,2,Alberta,2,America,81,Amsterdam,3,Anguilla,4,Antarctica,8,Antigua,4,Argentina,17,Arizona,25,Arkansas,4,Aruba,1,Asia Travel,46,Athens,3,Austin,8,Australia,104,Austria,17,Azerbaijan,1,Bahamas,15,Bangladesh,8,Barbados,1,Beach Travel,67,Belarus,2,Belgium,13,Belize,16,Bermuda,7,Bhutan,10,Blue Lagoon,2,Boatswana,2,Bolivia,6,Bosnia and Herzegovina,2,Boston,3,Botswana,3,Brazil,51,Brunei,1,Budget Travel,97,Bulgaria,2,California,126,Cambodia,5,Canada,86,Caribbean,50,Caribbean & Mexico,5,Chicago,11,Chile,10,China,26,Christmas Travel,18,Clothes,1,Coliseum,1,Colombia,19,Colorado,40,Columbia,3,Connecticut,6,Corporate Travel,1,Costa Rica,16,Country Travel,253,Croatia,22,Cruiser Travel,17,Cuba,18,Cultural Travel,65,Cyprus,2,Czech Republic,7,D.C.,2,Delaware,2,Denmark,16,Dominican Republic,2,Dubai,16,East Africa,4,Easter Island,1,Eco Travel,19,Ecuador,11,Egypt,8,Emirates,1,England,18,Estonia,2,Eswatini,1,Ethiopia,2,Europe,118,Fall Travel,46,Family Travel,134,Faroe Island,2,Featured,71,Features,417,Festival Travel,26,Fiji,9,Finland,16,Florida,81,Food,7,France,50,Free Travel,1,French,6,French Polynesia,7,Galapagos,3,Georgia,16,Germany,23,Ghana,2,Greece,46,Greenland,2,Guatemala,2,Halloween Travel,8,Hawaii,62,Hayden Panettiere,1,Hiking Travel,67,Historical Travel,85,Holiday Travel,34,Holland,1,Honeymoon Travel,138,Hong Kong,15,Hotels,73,Hungary,3,Iceland,48,Idaho,7,Ideas,11,Illinois,13,India,39,Indiana,5,Indonesia,15,Iraq,1,Ireland,44,Island,59,islands,2,Israel,12,Italy,71,Jamaica,11,Japan,56,Jordan,6,Kansas,8,Kentucky,2,Kenya,3,Korea,2,Kosovo,1,Kyrgyzstan,1,Las Vegas,3,Latin America,3,Latvia,1,Lithuania,3,London,26,Louisiana,10,Lowa,4,Luxembourg,2,Luxury Travel,35,Maine,10,Malaysia,1,Maldives,22,Malta,5,Maryland,8,Massachusetts,14,Mauritius,6,Mexico,85,Miami,14,Michigan,7,Mississippi,2,Missouri,8,Moldova,1,Monaco,3,Mongolia,1,Montana,15,Montenegro,2,Morocco,22,Myanmar,9,Namibia,5,Nature,4,Nature Travel,117,Nepal,6,Netherlands,13,Nevada,26,Nevis,2,New England,6,New Hampshire,3,New Jersey,3,New Mexico,10,New Year's Day Travel,5,New York,67,New York City,30,New Zealand,55,Newfoundland,1,Nicaragua,2,North America,12,North Carolina,9,North Dakota,1,North Ireland,1,North Macedonia,2,Northern Ireland,1,Norway,23,Occasional Travel,8,Oceania,1,Ohio,6,Oman,5,Oregon,13,Pakistan,4,Panama,8,Paraguay,1,Paris,26,Pennsylvania,12,Peru,24,Philippines,3,Phoenix,2,Photo Feature,1,Poland,5,Portugal,24,Prague,1,Puerto Rico,10,Qatar,6,Quebec,1,Resort,13,Rhode Island,3,River Travel,1,Road Trips,62,Romania,6,Romantic Getaways,16,Rome,6,Russia,17,Saint Lucia,2,San Miguel de Allende,1,Scotland,16,Seasonal,55,Seasonal Travel,58,Serbia,2,Sightseeing Tours,2,Singapore,20,Ski Resorts,11,Slovenia,7,Solo Travel,26,Solomon Islands,1,Somoa,1,Soth Africa,1,South Africa,19,South America,7,South Carolina,6,South Dakota,7,South Korea,6,South Pacific,3,Space Travel,15,Spain,41,Special,21,Special Features,304,Spring Travel,23,Sri Lanka,8,Student Travel,1,Summer Travel,67,Summer Vacation,10,Sweden,21,Swiss Alps,1,Switzerland,26,Sydney,2,Tahiti,4,Taiwan,5,Tanzania,4,Tennessee,8,Texas,59,Thailand,39,Thanksgiving Travel,6,Things to Do,167,Tibet,2,Tips,116,Train Travel,26,Transportation,20,Travel,188,Travel Advice,66,Travel Apps,1,Travel Guide,39,Travel Stories,26,Travel Technology,1,Travel Tips,244,Tunisia,2,Turkey,16,Turkish,1,Turks and Caicos,1,Tuscany,1,UAE,10,Uganda,1,UK,45,Ukrine,1,Urban Travel,54,Uruguary,3,USA,662,Utah,19,Uzbekistan,2,Vacation Travel,295,Vehicle Travel,1,Venezuela,1,Vermont,6,Victoria Falls,1,Vietnam,7,Village Travel,1,Virginia,11,Virtual Travel,6,Wales,5,Washington,16,Washington DC,21,Weddings Travel,4,West Indies,2,Wildlife Travel,13,Winter Travel,65,Wisconsin,7,Worldwide,161,Wyoming,8,xxx,1,Yemen,1,Zadar,2,Zambia,5,Zimbabwe,6,
Travel Magazine: Packing for a Family Road Trip
Packing for a Family Road Trip
Going on a family road trip this summer? Find out what to bring and how to pack it, so you can have an anxiety-free vacation.
Travel Magazine
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Read More Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS PREMIUM CONTENT IS LOCKED STEP 1: Share to a social network STEP 2: Click the link on your social network Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy