Packing Tips for a Family Outing

This time of year, families like to get out of the house and explore. They might spend the day at the beach, parks, festivals, amusement parks, museums, movies, or go shopping. When traveling with kids in tow, things like hunger pains, boredom, boo-boos, and more can disrupt the entire day. That’s why it’s important for parents and caregivers to make sure they have a few handy items on hand. Here are some packing tips to help you get on your way.

Family outing packing tips
Source: Pixabay

Snacks and Drinks

Unlike adults, kids aren’t too good at waiting to get something to eat or drink. When they’re hungry or thirsty, they make it apparent through their behavior. Getting them to cooperate on an empty stomach is nearly impossible. Having healthy snacks and beverages for them during your family outing, however, can save the day. Items like Bob’s Red Mill nutrition bars, veggies and dipping sauce, sandwiches, or some fresh fruit could get rid of those hunger cravings. As for drinks, stick to beverages with little to no sugar so they don’t end up wired throughout the rest of the day. 


During your family outing, there are bound to be periods of downtime when you’re just waiting. You could be waiting in line for movie tickets, sitting at a restaurant waiting to be served, or driving to your next destination. Kids like to be stimulated or else they may become bored. This leads to crankiness, arguments, tantrums, and other negative behaviors. Keeping them calm during those wait times means packing some form of entertainment. You can pack their favorite toy or stuffed animal, crayons and coloring books, or bring along a tablet which can entertain them with games and movies. 

First Aid

The hope is that you all go on your outing and have a great time without any incidents. If you’ve been a parent long enough, however, you know that’s not always possible. Kids are explorative and get into anything they can. Should they end up with a minor injury as a result, you want to make sure you can treat the problem right away. A cut or scrape while playing on the jungle gym at the park could easily be fixed with some cleaning solution, ointment, and a bandage. So, don’t forget to pack your first aid kit to take care of those tiny boo-boos. 

Spare Clothes

How does it seem that your kids can make a mess on themselves even in the cleanest places? Spilled food or drinks, a bathroom accident, grass stains, dirt, holes, and anything else could happen to their clothes. Unless you want to cut your family outing short, it’s probably a good idea to bring along some spare clothes for the kids. Not the older children, of course, but for your toddlers and even elementary school kids, having a change of clothes is necessary. 


If any of your children take prescription medications throughout the day you want to make sure you have their next dosage in your bag. Imagine going to the park and forgetting to give your kid allergy medicine or at an amusement park without their inhaler? It could be a disaster. You should also pack basic medications that you or the kids might use frequently like pain reliever, cold, or allergy meds just in case they start feeling a bit under the weather while you’re out. 

Diapers and Wipes

If you have a little one in tow who isn’t potty trained, be sure to bring some diapers, wipes, and disposable plastic bags. You’ll also want to pack some spare training underwear for toddlers who are learning to use the potty just in case there’s an accident. 

Hand Sanitizer

Kids put their hands on just about everything. You don’t want them getting sick but you can’t always get to a sink with some hand soap. As such, every parent should make sure that they have hand sanitizer with them. It quickly sanitizes their hands without the need for soap or water keeping them free from common germs and bacteria. 

It’s great that you’ve carved out some time in your busy schedules to spend time as a family. These are moments you’ll be able to treasure forever. If you’re going to have a good time, however, just be sure that you’ve done your due diligence. The packing tips above will reduce the chances of common issues when traveling with kids so you can all have a wonderful day out. 

Tips contributed by Anne Johnstone

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