All overseas adventures are on hold at the moment but most of us can still explore our local backyard. If you’re planning (or dreaming of) a trip, mum-of-three, Jenni, shares her super simple hacks on how to pack for kids when you go on holiday.

Get The Kids Involved

My advice, keep it simple. If your children are old enough, involve them in the process, it saves fights later.

Each child gets a packing box

We are lucky, we have a big van with lots of storage but we still like to keep items to a minimum. The children each have one ‘packing’ box of clothes (the size of the box will depend on the size of your child’s clothes) and then they are allowed to take one cuddle toy and one play toy each. The boxes we use are just Sistema boxes bought at half price from Woolworths. Stored in the van we have a few games/puzzles, stories, beach toys and colouring for those rainy indoor days. Depending on where we are going we may also include bikes.

No ipads

We don’t allow our children to take their Ipads, the idea is to get outdoors and explore and make our own fun. I do take mine for those absolute emergency times where a child might need some time out to calm down etc, but I only have puzzles, no games on it. We very rarely get it out though as they are usually too busy and totally forget about them.

What Clothes do we pack for kids?

So clothes wise, what do we pack for kids? From our experience, it’s always good to be prepared for all weather, and we often have specific camping clothes which stay in the van permanently. We just wash as we go, or once we return home, then repack it straight back into the box. This means next time we are ready to go, we don’t need to think.

Below is our clothing list for each child (keep in mind our children are still young so sometimes need more than one set of clothes a day, older children would need less).

  • 4 x underwear
  • 4 x socks
  • 2 x singlets
  • 1 x summer pjs
  • 1 x winter pjs
  • 4 x t-shirts
  • 2 x long sleeve t-shirts
  • 2 x leggings
  • 2 x tracksuit pants (3 for our son because he doesn’t have leggings)
  • 2 x shorts (3 for our son because he doesn’t have dresses)
  • 1 x winter dress
  • 1 x summer dress
  • 1 x jumper
  • 1 x warm jacket
  • 1 x vest
  • 1 x rain jacket

We also have bathers, beanies and gloves that live in a cupboard in the van. Shoes wise we have sneakers, thongs and slippers that also live in the van and depending on weather, we do sometimes chuck in a pair of gumboots for the puddle jumping days.

This may seem like a lot when it’s written down but it actually isn’t once packed and apart from the jackets, it all fits in the box.

When you have little ones who sometimes fall in puddles or have little accidents, you need an extra set of clothes and can’t always get stuff dry for the next day. If you don’t have the storage space or you need to keep weight limits down for towing then only pack for the weather that you are travelling in, so your clothes list will halve.

Boxes At The End Of Beds

The boxes are kept on the end of each of their beds and they can choose their own outfits for the day and, well, because we have identical twins it’s even easier for us to remember whose clothes are whose (especially for dad).

I hope this helps someone else be prepared. Happy packing!

You can follow JENNI AND HER FAMILY’S adventures and get other tips and information about places we’ve stayed by going to our website or following on Facebook or Instagram.

What are your tried and tested tips to pack for kids for holidays? Tell us in the comments below. 

  • some of these ideas are really good thank you


  • Great ideas I wish I had seen this before we went away this year


  • This certainly helps a lot, thank you.


  • Great idea, I’m always flustered when it comes to preparing for our trips and these are great tips. Thank you


  • Good ideas. I must admit I still pack all the clothes and toiletries etc for the kids but my eldest gets to choose which toys and colouring in books etc we bring.


  • That’s a pretty cool travel hack


  • For some kids, it may also help to pack complete outfits – eg in a plastic bag – so they just have to pull a complete outfit out each day.


  • Great idea to use a box. These would probably stack nicely in the car too.


  • Wow, so many good ideas. It was always a bit of a stress deciding what to pack and what to leave. Especially on flights with luggage limits


  • great ideas


  • This would be handy in holiday houses but definitely not for camping if you struggle for space. My partner, 1yo and I are going on a 3 week road trip around NSW so these wouldn’t be practical at all. I have packed minimal clothes and will hand wash whenever possible. All her clothes, shoes, hats, blankets packed into 1 small bag and my partner and I share a small bag also.


  • this is a good idea


  • lists, lists, lists


  • I have always involved my kids in packing although I wouldn’t bother keeping separate clothes in the van as kids get to a point where they grow so much they wouldn’t fit into it, although i guess it depends how often you go.


  • Some great tips – I think letting the kids get involved with packing is awesome, they start to think about what they might need, they have to made decisions as the toy options are limited, and best of all the have to come up with things to do that doesn’t include an electronic device!


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