How to Create a Kids Packing List

Every time you pack for a trip, you think you have everything, only for your child to later ask for their favorite toy, and you cannot find it anywhere. A kids packing list highlights all the items your child needs to have a safe and comfortable trip, including warm clothes, entertainment, and medical supplies. It will prevent you from over or under-packing and allow you to get in on the fun with the rest of your family. Here, we provide you with the ultimate kids packing list.

What Is a Kids Packing List?

A kids packing list is an itemized catalog of every item a child will need during a stay away from home. It is usually divided into categories – clothing, shoes, toys, etc. – so you can cover all your child’s needs. Depending on your child’s age and the nature of your trip, you can customize a kids packing list to be as long or as short as you want it to be.

The Kids Packing List: When Traveling with Kids

Traveling with your kids does not need to be hectic – you can eliminate the stress by going prepared. This list should help you do that:


Consider packing your kid’s clothes in packing cubes for maximum organization and excellent use of space. Your child does not need any special outfits – they really don’t care – so carry the following:


If you will be sticking to one place, you can buy enough for a day and then get the rest there. But if you will be moving around, take enough for several days.

  • 5 to 6 bodysuits
  • 3 pairs of pajamas

Note: If you have access to laundry services, you can pack one pair of pajamas and launder it in the morning for reuse the following night.

  • 5 to 6 outfits
  • 1 or 2 pairs of base layers
  • 1 swimsuit
  • 2 or 3 sweaters
  • Gloves and knit hats if it is cold
  • 5 to 6 pairs of socks
  • 1 jacket
  • 1 saddle or sleep sack


Shoes are very cumbersome, and carrying too many can slow you down. Try to be practical when packing shoes for your kids. For example, they don’t really need dress shoes, and 1 or 2 pairs will do. Depending on where we’re going, you can pack:

  • 1 pair of sandals (warm location)
  • 1 pair of walking shoes
  • 1 pair of rain boots or waterproof shoes (snowy location)

Medical Items

When it comes to medical items, you do not need to travel with your entire medicine cabinet. You can usually find most things you need wherever you are going and, chances are, you probably won’t need them. That said, the following items should come in handy in an emergency:

  • Prescription medicines
  • Anti-bacterial ointment
  • Pain relievers
  • Icy Hot
  • Bandages
  • Vitamins (as required)
  • Contact lenses, contact solution, glasses, and contact case
  • Melatonin
  • Insect repellant
  • A small thermometer
  • Ginger chews or kid’s Dramamine for nausea and motion sickness
  • Sunscreen
  • Lice comb

Tip: Carry allergy medicine if any of your kids has food allergies. Remember to keep a close eye on ingredient lists when shopping for snacks.


Pack the following toiletries, especially for your kids:

  • · Ziploc bags (several each of gallon and quart size)
  • Toothpaste, toothbrush, and floss
  • Wipes
  • Toiletries case
  • Several laundry pods or a small bag of powdered detergent
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Soap
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Several baby bows and hair ties

Kid Items

These are general items that you will need for your child daily:

  • A stuffed animal
  • Baby carrier
  • Stroller
  • 1 or 2 carry on backpacks
  • Booster seats and car seats, depending on your child’s age
  • Bib
  • Enough snacks
  • White noise app
  • Breast pump (if you need it)
  • Nursing cover (if you need it)
  • Baby cot (if you need it)
  • Pacifier and clip
  • Formula and bottles (for young babies)
  • Reusable water bottles
  • Inflatable footrest. You can use this when your kid wants to sleep on the plane.


To keep your kids entertained, especially when you are busy, pack the following:· 2 or 3 early readers or small board books

  • Several toy cars
  • A Kids Kindle if your child is an independent reader
  • A small bag of Legos or Click-a-Bricks
  • Paper and some crayons

Note: Supervise your kids when they play with Legos or Click-a-Bricks as they can present a choking hazard.

Travel Documents

Your kids will not be needing a credit card, but it is crucial to carry copies of their original documents, including their birth certificates. Most airports will request proof of a child’s birthdate, so do not leave this document behind – even for domestic trips.

Tips for Organized Packing When Travel with Kids

Now that you know everything you need to pack for a successful trip with your kids, here are some pointers to help bring all this together:

  • Use A List: Create a checklist and share it with your spouse (if you are traveling with them). Have them pick a category and pack for it as you do the same. You should be done in no time.
  • Roll Up Complete Outfits: If you have picked out complete outfits for specific days for your kids, roll them up together, underwear included, and place them in packing cubes. It will be easier for you to dress your younger kids and for older kids to dress themselves.
  • Pack Few Shoes: Pack a maximum of 2 pairs of shoes per child. If you are going to the beach, flip-flops and a nice pair should do.
  • Crosscheck Your Itinerary Against the Weather: Review the weather forecast for the place you are visiting and compare it to your itinerary. Use this information to pick out suitable clothes.

Keeping Your Kids Packing to a Minimum

If you are a minimalist, or even if you are not, you probably wish to avoid lugging around three suitcases during your beach vacation. You can achieve a minimalist packing list by limiting clothes to 3 to 5 outfits and investing in base layers. If you are able to do laundry, 3 is a perfect number. If your kids eat a lot of snacks, pack enough for the first night, then buy more when you get there. You can do the same for diapers and medical supplies as the need arises.

Final Thoughts

When using this Kids Packing List, remember that it is okay to customize it to your specific needs. If your kids are too old to play with Legos, for example, cross them off the list and substitute them with an age-appropriate toy. Go through every item, adding or removing entries that do not serve you until you have the perfect kids packing list for you and your family.