Traveling in the car: Packing tips

So, here we are traveling to GA for graduation of our Niece, Shanny Bug, and driving a 2012 Kia Optima with a 6’2” male behind the wheel, me sitting in the passenger seat up front, our 15-year-old daughter and dog Ollie in the back seat.

We are traveling for 7 days and I am bringing food and snacks along to save money, see the related post at the bottom of the page. We decided to put a hitch on my car so we could bring a cooler along that sat on this Cargo Rack. This car is not the best for traveling long distances, but getting 45 to 50 mies a gallon can’t be beat. (My Kia is a hybrid).

Okay, back to this trip. We are in the car, and I am working on the laptop in the front seat. I have a charger that works with my Macbook amazingly well. Our daughter is working on her art project for homeschooling and brought laptop desk, which we got at the Container store. I also purchased this desk for her In the back, not the best purchase but it may work for some of you. We also had this organizer from my old Suburban, and I hung it up to help catch those item that are always floating around in the car.

With the hitch on the car, we are able to bring our super large cooler which allows us to bring food from home. Being able to do this makes it possible to save money as I talked about here. The trunk is full of luggage and other food, dog and human alike. I also have my camera equipment, tripod, and toiletries in the trunk, and even left space for any “extras” we want to bring back.

While I used to pack everything but the kitchen sink, I have learned to pack for 3 or 4 days and make a capsule wardrobe, see this article at Travel Fashion Girl. Using the washer and dryer in the Airbnb rental or hotel is something I have learned to do. Purex has these laundry sheetsand they are AMAZING for traveling and kids in college dorms. (I could not find the Landry sheets that I have, but here is the idea).

I bring these items and we are able to wash laundry and save space in the trunk and luggage. While I am still paring down some of our toiletries, it is always a work in progress. I spent the last few weeks trying different makeup looks so that I could bring as few products as possible and save space. I have also been doing a huge de-clutter at home and have paired down my hair items. One curling iron, no hairdryer, as I will let my hair air dry. I am working on many more pair downs, and will bring you along for the ride at a later time.

Another travel tip is to pack a week ahead of time. We did this for the first time this trip and let me tell you,, it was so nice not to be rushing around looking for specific pieces of clothing in the laundry, dirty clothes etc…

Next time we travel I will most assuredly pack ahead of time for the humans and canines alike. This was the first time I was not in a frantic rush packing at the last minute. I had purchased snacks and drinks ahead of time, and the night before, I put all the items from the fridge on one shelf, for having hubby pack the cooler easily.

I washed the dogs bed ahead of time, and had it loaded with the toys in the car the day before. The night before, I had hubby bring the car into the garage so I could load my camera, laptop, etc you know those expensive pieces that you don’t want in the public eye.

Packing the night before, (except the refrigerator foods) made it so simple to get up this morning, load the pillows, dog and humans alike. We packed up our cords, meds, toothbrushes and off we went. Hubby and I both agree this was the easiest trip we have had with packing and not getting aggravated and frustrated while packing.

Give it a try and see if you have an easier time getting read for your travel adventures, until next time butterfly hugs.

Jenn

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