Before You Go: Printable Travel Checklist and Tips

Because 85% of parenting is yelling “GET IN THE CAR!!!!”, this one’s for all the parents that pack their suitcase last.

Most of us parents don’t struggle with the packing part, it’s all of the “other” stuff. Here’s a free printable to make sure that you can enjoy your trip without worrying about things you forgot on the home front.

Download and Print the PDF: MOM’S TRAVEL CHECKLIST


As far as the packing goes, don’t pack for your kids. Tell them how many nights you’ll be gone and let them have some ownership of the preparation process. Ride out the excitement and anticipation of the trip!

I always ask the kids to lay everything out as outfits and then call me when they think they’re ready. Usually, I’ll make a couple adjustments to their choices and explain why so that they understand the rationale behind the decision. If you do it for them, they’ll never learn. If they argue with me, I explain that I will not buy them a _____ on the trip because they chose not to pack it.

Another packing hack I like is with medication and/or vitamins. Instead of bringing a gnarly plastic bag where pills go to die a dusty and unidentified death – I made this handy pill box with labels. It allows me to pack a variety of medication in a neat way. I ordered this little case off Amazon and I printed off the labels, cut them out, and brushed Modge Podge over them. (My PDF matches this linked pill case only – not sure the sizing will be right on another one).

The only thing I bring beyond this little case is a few bandaids in my makeup bag. Here’s the downloadable PDF Travel Medication Labels of the mini logos for my pill case below – a label maker or sharpie will do just fine though!

**Remember if you’re going abroad – you’ll need all prescription medication in it’s original bottle with the prescription name on the outside matching your own;) You’ll be forced to throw away that medication if not – including birth control. Vacation conception is a great story….buuuut

Happy vacay prepping!

Mama Hickey


1 reply
  1. Deborah Bohn
    Deborah Bohn says:

    Excellent article! I love the part about letting kids take ownership of the process. That creates seasoned travelers when they are teenagers who don’t need any help. I also seriously appreciate the pack it up pack it in headline! no parenting advice article is complete without a House of Pain reference amirght?


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