Minimalist Family Packing

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I am so excited to have another guest post by Claire Hastings. I personally have a love/hate relationship with packing. I am efficient, but would not call myself a minimalist by any means! If you are curious how I pack, click here. But read through for Claire’s awesome tips on how to pack when space is at a premium!

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Minimalist Guide to Family Packing. Guest post by Claire Hastings. #travel #family #traveltips #packing #packingtips

Minimalist Family Packing Guide for Summer Vacation


Minimalist Guide to Family Packing. Guest post by Claire Hastings. #travel #family #traveltips #packing #packingtips

Summer’s here – say ‘yes’ to the break from work and lying all day long at the beach while sipping refreshing drinks with your family. But before you get to that, you need to go through the initial and most daunting phase of every family summer vacation – the packing. In these situations, it can be hard to limit yourself only to the essentials because you’re always under the impression that you’ll need much more. Don’t worry, the only thing you need is some lessons in minimalist packing. Here’s how to pack your family for the summer vacation by bringing only the absolutely necessary items.


Make compartments in your suitcase

Minimalist Guide to Family Packing. Guest post by Claire Hastings. #travel #family #traveltips #packing #packingtips

If you want to spare yourself the trouble of diving into your suitcase to find what you need, make use of packing cubes.  They are extremely practical because they allow you to arrange the items in different compartments and ensure maximum organization and neatness. Use them to separate your clothes, underwear, and shoes, and you won’t get a headache every time you try to take something out of your suitcase.


Toiletry and medical supplies

It’s important to keep your skin clean, but don’t go overboard with the beauty elixirs. Keep things simple by carrying your toothbrush, body wash, hair brush, sunscreen, face cleanser, lip balm, deodorant, shampoo, and towel. When it comes to makeup, bring only your basics, whatever they may be. For example, you can include a lipstick, liner, and concealer. Apart from this, it’s a good idea to bring a medical kit with all the necessities that you and your family can make use of in case somebody gets sick. Be sure to bring band-aids, probiotics, aspirins, some antiseptic cream, and anything else that might come in handy during the vacation.



Minimalist Guide to Family Packing. Guest post by Claire Hastings. #travel #family #traveltips #packing #packingtips

It’s difficult to make the final selection of clothes, as both you and your family are likely to use the I-might-wear-it approach. This will only leave you buried under a pile of clothes that won’t get a chance to be worn at your vacation at all. Limit yourself to two pieces of everything – the one that’s being worn and the one that serves as a backup in case the first piece gets dirty. So, you can include two short-sleeved shirts, two shorts, two pairs of pants, etc. Bring several pieces of underwear and one pair of shoes.

You’ll probably be doing a lot of walking, and this might take its toll on the little ones. Make sure your kids wear adequate shoes and insoles. Protalus inserts for kids are a great option, because children can experience over pronation and supination of the ankle just as much as an adult can. Adding an insole can correct this.

Make sure that either tops or bottoms are in neutral colors in order to be able to combine them easily. However, regardless of how hot it is during the day, nights tend to become slightly chillier, so you’ll need some layering pieces. There’s a wide selection of kaftans online that are ideal for summer night walks, so browse through and take your pick.



Your summer vacation is a great opportunity for technological detox, so use the time to bond with your family instead of playing with your gadgets. Bring your smartphone and make use of the hotel’s WiFi network when the need arises and leave your computer and tablet at home. Use Skype app to chat with your family and friends at home and to let them know how things are going.  



Minimalist Guide to Family Packing. Guest post by Claire Hastings. #travel #family #traveltips #packing #packingtips

If you have little kids, chances are they’ll want to bring their entire toy collection with them. This doesn’t go well with the whole minimalist theory, so think in terms of size and thickness – paper and crayons, puzzles, and stickers won’t take too much room, and your kids will still be happy.


Packing for a summer vacation can be challenging, but if you follow these minimalist rules, you’ll be able to spare both your time and your nerves, and before you know it, you’ll be enjoying the sun.


Photo credit: ♥KatB Photography♥ via / CC BY-NC

I am so excited to have another guest post by Claire Hastings. She is a designer and style writer from Australia. She has been writing as long as she can remember. She is also an eternal enthusiast, cat lover and regular contributor at
Please read her other Momma To Go articles, Wanderer’s Fashion Basics Part I and Part II, and An Aussie In Riyhadh

You can follow Claire on twitter.

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28 Comments to “Minimalist Family Packing”

  1. I am a terrible over packer. We recently bought carry on size luggage and now I am limited to my own little suitcase and it has helped with keeping my packing in check.

  2. These tips will come in handy. I like to pack every piece of clothing I own, because, you just never know, right? But, I know I bring too much. There are always things I never get around to wearing!

  3. Ann

    It is really challenging to have kids travel with you because the tendency is that they will bring all the toys they have. Thanks to this article, at least I already have an idea on what to bring if I will be travelling with my nephew soon. I hope he would just be satisfied with the crayon things! haha

  4. These are great suggestions. I’m not the best at packing. My husband always pulls out the itinerary for the trip and plans his outfits around that. My method? “Does it fit? Is it clean? Perfect. It’s coming with us.”

  5. I love packing light, I always overpacked and just started packing lighter and it is so freeing. I have so much more space in my bags for things I find on vacation and less chances of leaving things behind!

  6. No matter how hard I try to be a minimalist packer, I also seem to overpack. I’ve gotten a lot better than what I used to be, especially because now I limit the bag size I use, and I don’t like it to be too heavy. I really need to invest in those packing cubes though; I’ve only heard great things about them, and I’m all about more organization while packing!

  7. We are packing to to move today! We have to pack all the things we don’t want the movers to take since we will be without our household goods for a week or more. This post is great! I e been very pickey about what we pack to save space.

  8. I’m a pretty efficient packer, but I’m not sure I could cut down to 2 of each!! That’s impressive! I pack 3 of each: one to wear, one to wash, and one drying. Especially with the kids…they might go through all 3 shirts in a day!!
    Now I have a new goal…cut down to 2!

  9. I think before my trip to Europe this year I’m going to take some of your chips to heart. I always pack way too much. And they do say, if you forgot it, you can always buy it over there. Good excuse for a little shopping trip.


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