The Essential Checklist for Traveling with Kids

traveling with kids checklist

Has it been a while since you enjoyed a vacation with the entire clan? Perhaps you’re new to the whole parent thing and this will be your first taste of family travel. Adventures away with little ones can be incredibly rewarding, but those treasured memories don’t come without a cost. To save yourself all manner of temper tantrums and the headaches that come with it, you’ll need to put together an ironclad packing list that covers every eventuality. Need some travel tips for putting together your itinerary, as well as a travel bag with wheels? We’ve got you covered. 

First Steps in Family Vacation Planning

The first phase of family vacation planning is to decide who’s going and what kind of adventure you’ll be embarking on. A road trip might go down well with older children, but these types of journeys aren’t a good fit with teething toddlers and youngsters with short attention spans. Eager to escape to sunny climes? Hot weather and beach light might appeal to older travelers, but those balmy temperatures can prove stifling to little ones. 

Questions To Ask Prior To Packing

Does it seem like you spend more time packing for a vacation than you do actually enjoying it? You can streamline travel packing significantly by asking yourself a few key questions before hauling your luggage out from under the bed

packing with kids

What’s Your Destination? 

To avoid stuffing your suitcases with items you’ll never need, consider your destination in detail. Heading to a beach resort with the family? Unless you’re booked into a five-star luxury resort with a strict dress code, there’s not much call for formalwear. However, you will need plenty of swimwear and beach-friendly staples at the ready. Have you booked an all-inclusive vacation with activities organized for you? Snorkels, life preservers, and other extras are probably going to be provided for you. 

What Time of Year Will You Be Traveling?

Even the sunniest locale can feel the chill once winter rolls around. Do your homework ahead of your departure to get an idea of average daytime and nighttime temperatures. This way, you’ll have suitable clothing for every weather eventuality. What’s more, at many destinations, activities and attractions may be seasonal. Check opening times and availability before your arrival to avoid disappointment. 

How Long is Your Trip?

As a general rule, the longer you’re away from home, the more you’ll need to pack. However, you have some flexibility if you’re staying in accommodation with access to laundry facilities. You’ll be able to clean and reuse those favorite outfits, without weighing down your luggage with needless spares. Only getting away for a weekend? Don’t assume you can scrape by with a change of clothes or two. When you’re traveling with kids, accidents are almost a certainty, so you’ll need spares at the ready. 

Are They Any Special Requirements You Need To Consider?

If anyone in your traveling party has special requirements, you’ll need to start your planning early. If someone has mobility issues, you’ll need to notify your airline ahead of time. You’ll also need to check with your hotel that you’ll be provided an accessible room upon your arrival. Do you or someone in your family have any health conditions? Make sure you’ve got a full stock of prescription medication in your possession before your departure. It’s also a good idea to bring along any medical documents, both as paper copies and in digital form, in case of an emergency.  

Vacation Checklist for Kids 

Already counting down the days until your vacation? Before you start reaching for the shades and sun lotion, make sure you’ve accounted for all the travel essentials you’ll need when vacationing with kids. 


It’s easy enough to forget those all-important travel documents when you’re traveling solo. When you’re heading off with the entire brood, you'll need to take charge of everybody’s passports, tickets, and vias. Does your destination require proof of any vaccinations? Make sure you’re armed with these as well. You’ll also want to have paper and digital copies of any travel insurance documents to hand. 

Travel-Sized Toiletries

There’s no point packing family-sized toiletries for a short trip away. Not only will you be sacrificing valuable luggage allowance, but there’s also the chance those bulky bottles might spring a leak in transit. To make life easier, opt for travel-sized versions of toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, and so on. 

Lunch Pots and Bowls 

Even if you’re lucky enough to have a toddler who’s not fussy about what they eat, there’s a good chance they’re pretty particular about the utensils they eat with. To make things more familiar for them and prevent any mealtime meltdowns, pack their favorite feeding bowls, spoons, and other dining essentials. 

Water Flask

You never know how far away the next faucet or drinking fountain is. With a water flash at hand, you never need to worry about staying hydrated. If you don’t mind lugging around the extra weight, go for a gallon-sized water bottle. Failing that, hand out personal flasks to everyone, reminding them that they’re responsible for carrying them. 

Instant Stain Remover

Spills and stains are pretty much a given when you’re traveling with babies and toddlers. You can’t even count on older kids to get through a meal without ruining a brand-new shirt or pair of slacks. A quick blot of instant stain remover will save you an arduous laundry task upon your return home.

Portable Potty

Planning an adventure with younger children? Keep on top of toilet training with a portable potty. You can use your usual potty if you’re traveling by car and have enough space in your trunk. However, a collapsible portable design will be required if you’re making any leg of your trip via public transport. 

Mini First Aid Kit

Bumps, scrapes, and the occasional cut are hallmarks of any family vacation. A mini first kit packed with bandits, disinfectant spray, and gauze will ensure you’re ready to attend to any emergency. Are you and your other half planning on indulging once the kids have gone to bed? Make sure you’re throwing in a bottle of aspirin as well. 

Little Toys

Tantrum-prone toddlers need plenty of distractions while traveling. Save yourself a headache at an airport departure lounge or hotel lobby by having a selection of small toys to pull out and entertain your little ones. Favorite soft toys are always a good choice.

Travel Comfort Items

Whether it’s an arduous road trip or a long-haul international flight, it’s crucial that you keep your youngsters as comfortable as possible. Something as simple as a travel pillow will encourage groggy toddlers to nap during journeys, rather than pester you and fellow passengers. 

Electronic Device Essentials

If you’re depending on a tablet loaded with kid-friendly viewing to keep little ones entertained, make sure you’ve packed the basics like chargers and travel adapters. The same applies to your cell phone, camera, and anything else that runs on electricity. 

The Hulken Rolling Tote: The Best Bag for Traveling with Kids

A good bag can make all the difference when traveling with kids. Duffel bags and soft-shell suitcases might have served you well in the past, but this kind of luggage isn’t ideal if you have little ones in tow. If you’re looking for a generous carrying capacity and maximum maneuverability, think about investing in the Hulken rolling tote

Available in a range of sizes, the Hulken is perfect for families who can’t travel without their favorite creature comforts. Along with a spacious interior, the Hulken is one of the more rugged travel bags on the market. High-grade materials and a reinforced base make it incredibly durable, while unbreakable handles add to the convenience. You’ll also appreciate the Hulken’s swivel wheels. You’ll be able to glide effortlessly through airport terminals and along train station platforms, even when you’re hauling a full load of vacation staples. The Hulken can even be used as an eco-friendly carry-on bag.  Learn valuable hulken tips to maximize your rolling tote's efficiency

Can’t wait to get your hands on the Hulken? Explore the full range online today or head to Hulken’s Amazon store to order your new travel companion. 

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