9 Essential Items to Bring on Your Next Family Vacation


Don’t leave home without these

A family vacation is a great way to make lifelong memories with your kids. But that doesn’t mean it won’t come with some challenges, especially when you’re deciding what to pack. Overpack and you’ll have to pay overweight bag fees. But you also don’t want to leave out anything important…

No worries; we’ve put together a list of don’t-leave-home-without-them essentials. Pack them to make your vacation happier for everyone.

  • Backpack or travel bag

    Ever see moms walking around with young kids, carrying just a tiny purse? Yeah, neither do we! Kids require stuff. And that means you need to lug it around with you.

    Whether you’re hitting a theme park or beach, you’ll need something to carry a day’s worth of snacks, drinks, electronics, guidebooks, etc.

  • Electronic accessories

    Your kids will make sure you don’t leave home without all the “necessary” phones/tablets/laptops. But accessories are another story.

    First things first: a waterproof case. Even if your vacation doesn’t involve a beach or pool, kids and spills go hand in hand. Also, bring a power bank or two; you never know how long you’ll be in between chargers.

  • Finally, make sure that anything and everything that younger kids (or even some of the older ones) will be holding is safely ensconced in a drop-poof, shatter-proof case.
  • First aid kit

    With kids, scrapes and bumps are pretty much inevitable. Having a supply of band-aids, antibiotic ointment, and a thermometer is always a good idea. And throw in a pair of tweezers, too; kids have a way of getting splinters even where there’s no wood to be found!

    Pro Tip: If you’re spending time in the sun, bring along post-sun relief such as aloe vera. No matter how careful you are, sunburn is always a possibility—and it can ruin a family

  • Headphones (and a headphone splitter)

    When one kid’s playing music, another one’s watching a movie, and you just want to hear a podcast, you’ll all end up frustrated. Save the fighting (and your eardrums!) with headphones for everybody.

    While we’re on the subject: invest in a headphone splitter. When the kids who would never watch the same movie at home insist on watching the same movie at the same time on vacation, you can plug in both of their headphones to the same device. Bam!

  • Layers

    Bring lightweight jackets for everyone. Even if you’re going someplace warm. Or maybe we should say, especially if you’re going someplace warm. Because the air conditioning in restaurants, museums, and even just hotel lobbies can be downright freezing.

  • Offline entertainment

    Yes, we know you’ve downloaded enough movies, apps, and games to keep the kids busy. But eventually, they’ll get bored with them. Or you’ll want to give their eyes a break from screens. Or their electronics will need to be recharged.

    When that happens, offline entertainment will save the day. Coloring books and crayons, a deck of Uno cards, or even a jump rope for more active kids will save the day—and your sanity.

  • Refillable water bottles

    Staying hydrated is important. Make it easier on yourself and be kinder to the planet with a refillable water bottle, which you can take (empty) through TSA. Fill it up at the hotel before you head out, then top it off throughout the day whenever you stop for meals or snacks.

  • Snacks

    Nobody wants hangry kids! If your kids are used to regular snack breaks, bring along some of their favorite treats to keep them on schedule. This also works if there’s a long wait for a table, not unusual if you’re in a popular family vacation destination. That restaurant coloring sheet won’t distract them when their little tummies start growling.

    Pro Tip: Stick to healthy snacks such as trail mix, granola bars, nuts, or dried fruit to avoid the dreaded sugar rush!

  • Souvenir Budget

    Overpriced souvenirs from tourist shops add up quickly and can become an overwhelming expense. Older kids can learn to budget and prioritize if you give them a price limit. Younger kids can be given a “one toy” limit instead of a dollar budget.

Essentials? We’ve got you covered! With these items, your next family vacation will be an absolute breeze.

And to make your vacation even more of a breeze, ship your stuff to your hotel or Airbnb with LugLess. We’ll take care of getting your bags to your final destination, so the only thing you have to worry about at the airport is your little ones.